In Derbyshire, there were five awareness events, attracting over 160 people.
- A remarkable 100 people turned up for an evening walk in Hathersage to observe swifts.
- An evening walk in Bakewell drew 40 people.
- A walk in Derby and Melbourne.
- A swift-watching evening in Chesterfield held at a house where nine pairs nest.
Nick Brown, who runs the Derbyshire Swift Conservation Project and who’s idea Swift Awareness Week was, said: “Swifts spend most of their lives flying endlessly over Africa, only returning to Europe for three months in the summer to raise their young.
They hoover up millions of tiny spiders and insects such as midges and aphids flying high in the air and they only come to earth when they have to lay their eggs.
They find tiny holes in older properties, usually either under the eaves or under roof tiles, and squeeze in to any dark space to make the nests and lay their eggs.
When houses have new soffits or a new roof, these holes are accidentally blocked up and the birds find themselves homeless.
And new buildings are so hermetically sealed there’s no way a swift could get in to breed.”