WHAS - Bird Lists and Wildlife Sightings

Rainier's Vaux's Swifts fall update

Vaux Swift in Rainier OR

Upon learning that 3,000 Vaux's Swifts were observed at Chapman School in Portland the other night, Darrel Whipple decided to check out Carpet One in Rainier.  Result was Carpet One - 0, Rainier's Old Hall (Big Green) - 82. The migrating swifts are dropping into the tallest chimney in Big Green (the northwest corner, behind City Hall). Some were observed there during the northward migration in May,

but he didn't get accurate counts because he was occupied with the big numbers in Carpet One.  The migrants in Rainier may be headed for Chapman next.

Anyone who would like to participate in the monitoring during the next two weeks -- even for one hour on one evening around sunset -- please give Darrel a call (503-556-9838) or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. him. It would be great to get a peak count for the southward migration on one of these nights; he doesn't know which night it will be; it could be your night. Darrel has a record from a year ago of 1,830 swifts in Carpet One on Sept. 7. The high count last spring (the northward migration) was 1,999 in Carpet One on May 8. September counts ought to be the big ones, with all the new babies, so let's beat our monitoring record. Join the fun; it's an amazing spectacle!

Observer: Darrel Whipple
Date: September 2, 2011
Time of start of observation: 7:48 pm
Weather: Clear, 70 degrees F. at 8:05 pm, wind NW 10-20 mph
Official sunset: 7:49 pm
First swifts observed: 7:55 pm
First swift entered: 8:09 pm
Last swift entered: 8:11 pm
End of observation: 8:20 pm
Notes: All but two swifts swooped into the chimney at 8:09. This was the first monitoring session of the season.


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