Swift Awareness Week begins today


The annual UK Swift Awareness Week (UKSAW) begins today [3 July], with 60 events taking place across the country.

More than 90 local, independent groups throughout Britain are working to help keep Common Swifts – a quickly declining summer migrant – in our skies. A full list of events being held in the coming week can be found on the Action for Swifts website here.

More than 60 events, all designed at raising awareness of the decline of Common Swift, are taking place across the country this week (Andrew Moon).

UKSAW was set up in 2018 and is coordinated by Nick Brown of the Derbyshire Swift Conservation Project, who commented: "The week gives swift enthusiasts the opportunity to run a wide range of events aimed at their local communities. Evening swift-watching walks are popular and well attended but in addition there are swift stalls, displays, zoom talks and more. 

"In the last 10 years there has been an explosion in the number of active local swift groups. Most are independent of the big conservation charities, instead set up by individuals who felt the need to do something to look after their local swifts, a bird which nationally have declined by 62% in the last 25 years."

Edward Mayer, who runs the Swift Conservation website, said: "Swifts bring our towns and cities alive with the sound of their spectacular screaming parties and their fantastic aerodynamic flights. We need to keep this unique experience alive and local groups across the country have shown how to do it!  

"This iconic bird has declined drastically and it needs all the help it can get. So join your local group or set up a new one and start making a difference to our threatened biodiversity."