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Swift Night Out: Montgomery

Chimney swifts at dusk by Greg Harber

Pre-registration is required by 12 p.m. CDT on Thursday, September 2nd, and space is limited.

Registration coming soon.

Participants must complete the mandatory online waiver. Please do not request registration for others when submitting your request.

September 3, 2021 , 6:30 pm 8:00 pm

Swift Night Out is back, and we’re partnering with the Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Division of the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to have it in Montgomery! Join us as we enjoy the evening with one of our favorite urban birds, the chimney swift (Chaetura pelagica). All ages and abilities welcome!

After these aerial acrobats have fledged their young and cleared out their nests, the entire North American population makes its way south to winter along the remote headwaters of the Amazon River. On their way there, they congregate in huge roosting flocks with as many as two or three thousand birds sharing a single chimney—numbers that make for a tremendous spectacle when they all pour into the tiny opening at once.

Together, we’ll wait for sunset (7:07 p.m.), watch the swifts work themselves up into their nightly “swiftnado,” and then count the number of individuals who enter the roost. Best of all, the data we produce will help researchers at the Chimney Swift Conservation Association (chimneyswifts.org) get a better sense of trends in eastern swift populations and the effects of climate change on these birds’ annual migratory cycle.

The details: Location details will be announced about a week before the event as we scout for active roosts and the best viewing locations.

Binoculars are handy, but certainly not necessary, for viewing the swifts as they assemble in the skies above the chimney. You may want to bring a lawn chair. If you’re a social media user, we strongly encourage you to share your thoughts and photos with the hashtag #AlabamaSwiftWatch!

Accessibility: Wheelchair accessible

The trip leader: Mercedes Maddox leads this trip along with Alabama Audubon’s own Sarah Randolph. Feel free to email us with questions.

Love swifts? Support our efforts to build chimney swift nesting towers throughout Alabama. For more hands-on action, join our Alabama SwiftWatch program by signing up at alaudubon.org/volunteer.