The Center for Animal-CanMove Movement Research at the University of Lund in Sweden in conducting a research in order to have a better understanding of the biology of the Common Swift during their migration period. The researchers are looking for answers to questions such as whether it is true that this bird may be on the wing until returning back to the nest site to breed? How long does it take to reach their winter camps in Africa? Do they use specific migratory routes? At wich altitudes do they fly? Do they stop on the way to refuel energy? how do they face the bad weather once in Africa? Do they compete in areas where there are other swift species? etc.

Taking advantage of the loyalty of these species to their nest sites where they return back season after season, adults were deployed with back geologgers. They are the backpacker swifts! The adults return to the nest and the data is then retrieved . The research yielded good recovery results in 2010 when 6 out of 8 swifts where back and data recovered.. Right now many of the 115 backpackers from last season are back to their nests. The researchers expect a recovery near 75%, and at least 40 sets of correct data for their analysis.

Certainly, to protect a species that shows a population decline in many countries, it is really important to know what they do the other 9 months of the year in Africa.We are looking forward the publication of the results.


A video with Ammon Hann, an expert on Common Swift from Israel, placing a geologger in a swift in Tel aviv last season 

http://vimeo.com/11980693

 

Pictures from Erich Kaiser in his colony in Kronberg

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