18 September 2014

Birdly Migration Wonders About Omaha

Autumn continues its progression and new wonders of Missouri Valley migration are now occurring.

The evenings of 16-17 September have been especially enjoyable for the number of chimney swifts and common nighthawks seen.

On both of the last two evenings, two huge roosts of swifts have been visited. There were about 1500 swifts the first night in the west Mercer Park area. These birds have previously used this structure, but the number observed is the single greatest count for birds at an autumn roost for Omaha.

On Wednesday evening, a different structure in the Blackstone district once again had about 1400 swifts, a number similar to the same date in 2013.

A few nighthawks were seen Tuesday, but on Wednesday were constantly overhead from Dundee to Cathedral, and the Joslyn and Blackstone neighborhoods. There were hundreds of birds kettling and silently bugging overhead.

There was an ample supply of bugs available. One large swarm in the neighborhood was obvious earlier in the neighborhood, and lesser bunches could be seen elsewhere during my bicycling about looking for chimneys being used by roosting swifts.

It's a fine evening when the antics of a multitude of swifts can be found and observed as they gather, circle about and then dart into their overnight shelter!