New Fall Roost Discovered in Downtown Winnipeg

Last week Patricia stepped outside a friends apartment and noticed a large group of swifts forming over the Donald Bridge. In the following few minutes, 19 swifts entered the northern chimney on an apartment block at 303 Assiniboine Avenue.

A few days later, Marie-Eve, a fellow U of M postgraduate biologist whom Patricia had been visiting that fateful first evening, watched 40 swifts enter the chimney from her apartment overlooking the chimney, plus 2 popping into the southern chimney on that same building.

John followed up again last night and counted an impressive 103 swifts, with a possible exit thrown in for good measure.

It is very common for large roosts to form during fall migration, although this is the largest recorded in Winnipeg since MCSI began formal monitoring.

The swifts are beginning to gather for migration but watch out for any further evening gatherings as they prepare for the long journey to South America.

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The Manitoba Chimney Swift Initiative (MCSI) aims to understand the causes behind the decline in Chimney Swift populations and help reverse the trend.