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Click for Heirloom Tomato Seed Selection

Save Seeds - Victory Horticultural Library

matersearch.com - online tomato resources

A history of International Harvester and our farm's tractors.

Welcome to Dunton Family Farms
Since 1909

Swift Towers
Winter 2023?

On the evening of August 7, 2007, we were outside of the house talking when we noticed this massive flock (swarm) of birds that looked similar to barn swallows.  As the sun declined, they all started to zoom, like fighter pilots, into our old chimney.

We had never seen such a site and my Dad has been around here for close to seven decades!

Dad did some research and learned that the birds that were using the chimney as a night-time roost are Vaux's Swifts.  They are a very interesting and beneficial bird.

We are very close to their Northern most migration point of British Columbia.  In the fall, they migrate back down to Central America and Venezuela.  The aerobatics that they perform nightly is a very cool show.

They are extremely beneficial birds to have around.  Two parents and their noisy offspring will consume over 12,000 flying insect pests every day. While in flight, they devour nearly one third of their own weight in flying insects (mosquitoes, gnats, biting flies, termites, etc.), everyday!

Now comes the bad news.  Our old farmhouse is heated exclusively with wood.  The old unlined brick chimney that they have found is slated to be cleaned and lined with stainless steel prior to this (2007) heating season.  We will wait until they leave to perform the work but that means that next year, they will not have a home on our farm.

Swift Tower in TexasSo, using the research my Dad performed, I found a solution to attract them back.  We love insect eating birds here on the farm!

The picture to the left is of a model Swift Tower at the Hornsby Bend Wastewater Treatment Plant near Austin, Texas.  They use them as an informational Kiosk as well. 

This is the model that we will use to construct habitat here on the farm.  We hope to have one to three constructed by next spring's migration.

The first link below has detailed plans for constructing the towers and the next two links have step-by-step photographs of the process.

Interesting Links:

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