Date: 8/10/17 9:54 am
From: Isaac Denzer <bartailedgodwit...>
Subject: [obol] Corvallis CHIMNEY SWIFT--8/6/2016
Hi all,

I found a Chimney Swift in Corvallis (to the west of the Reser Stadium)
on Sunday, Aug 6th. My description along with other details can be found
at the bottom of this email. The swift was found in a residential area
with a mid sized group of VASWs (about 140-150). I do not feel
comfortable disclosing the exact location of this bird as I'm not sure
the locals would appreciate having loads of birders outside their houses
all the time. Also I did not fell comfortable sharing this information
right away for similar reasons as mention above. However, it would be
well worth checking larger swift roosts in the area as it may have moved
to one.

If this record is accepted by the OBRC it will be Oregon'f fourth record
and a first for Benton County.

Happy swift hunting,


Isaac Denzer


I saw what I am positive was a Chimney Swift in Corvallis on the evening
of 8/6/17 at about 8:20 PM. I saw and heard it at close range with a
flock of about 140 Vaux's Swifts while my mom was stopping by a friends
house. I want to keep this very quite as it is a residential
neighborhood, and the people living in the area may not feel comfortable
having a pack of people running around outside their yards with cameras
and binoculars, so this checklist will be hidden until I believe the
bird to be gone.

First seen at 8:21 PM while watching a flock of about 140 Vaux's Swifts
and last seen at about 8:30. I did not have any optics or other birding
gear on me at the time, but the Chimney Swift (along with about 40
Vaux's) was flying quite close to me and I got some very good views. I
feel 100% confident of the ID.

My over all impression was of a larger swift (in comparison to the
nearby Vaux's), it appeared have a comparatively longer tail and
somewhat narrower wings and a noticeably darker rump and throat. After
first seeing this bird I got quite excited and started listening for
Chimney Swift calls. After a couple minutes I heard it call, I heard it
one more time after that and saw it twice more. The call did not sound
like any VASW I have ever heard. The best description of the call I can
find is in the Sibley Guide to the birds of North America. Sibley
describes it as "single high, hard chips run together into a rapid,
uneven, twittering, chattering series". VASW calls should have a higher
tone than the bird I heard and the chips should be followed by a buzzy
trill. I have heard and seen Chimney Swifts on the east coast, and this
bird seemed to be a very good fit. As mentioned above Vaux's should be
about 10% smaller, have comparatively shorter, narrower wings and a
shorter tail and have a considerably paler throat and rump. Also the
Chimney seemed to have some bulging on the edges of the primaries,
whereas the Vaux's appeared to have pretty straight edges to the primaries.

Ruling out of other somewhat similar species: Similar tropical species
ruled out by voice, plumage and certain structural differences. The only
tropical swift lookalike to Chimney Swift is the Chapman's Swift and its
call is quite different from those of a Chimney. Also any tropical swift
in Oregon would be VERY unlikely. Black Swift should be much bigger and
darker overall, with broader tail and longer wings, also they should
have a different flight style and calls. White-throated Swift should be
larger and have a white throat, white patches on sides of rump and white
tips to secondaries, also a longer tail, different flight style and
different calls. Purple Martin would be much bigger, bulkier and darker
(if a male) or have a pale belly (if a female) and a notched tail, along
with a very different flight style and calls. Other swallows have
different flight style, calls and pale bellies along with other field
marks of which I can go into more detail in if needed. Also many of the
species above would probably not be found flocking with Vaux's Swift.

Unfortunately I did not have any birding equipment on me, not even my
phone to record the calls with. This report is written from memory (as I
couldn't find any paper either...).


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