Swifts are on the decline and need our help!
Swifts have been moved from the amber list of birds of conservation concern to the RED list because their numbers have more than halved - Swift populations have fallen by 58% since 1995!
Lewes Swift Supporters are led by a committee of enthusiastic volunteers who are determined to protect and expand the town's falling population of Swifts! We are doing this by monitoring and caring for the nest sites that we already have, by creating new homes for the birds, and by spreading the word about these marvellous and mysterious Summer visitors. Together, we can do this!
Lewes has always been an important town for Swifts, with an estimated 10% of Sussex Swifts nesting here! Renovation of old buildings and modern building methods mean that many of the nooks, crannies and eaves where they historically built their nests have disappeared.
Our surveys of Swifts, from late April to early August, identify both existing nests and areas where young Swifts are prospecting. We focus on these Swift "hot spots" to provide some additional nest box accomodation through fund-raising. We also advise and support residents across Lewes so that they can buy and install their own boxes.
The photograph below shows a young fledgling Swift rescued by Sharon Hall, one of our surveyors, in 2020. East Sussex Wildlife Rescue Ambulance Service looked after the Swift until it had grown large and strong enough to be released from Malling Down.