Common Swift registration

For follow the behaviour of Common Swifts in the neighbourhood of their nesting place, we have developed a system to follow and registered all the movements near nest box 9 and 10.

The system is developed in 2001. It was the video registration from Chris Mulder that gave us the idea how much information we could get if we could registered the movements of the Common Swifts during flying in and out the nest box. It was our aim, during the whole season, to observer and register breeding birds for 24 hours a day.

The system is developed in 3 steps.

1. I have placed a few infrared sensors in the entrance and into the nesting places. They register with hobby electronics all the movements and convert into digital signals.

In the year 2001 we have registered with the old situation, after that we have a new one. (See figure) That was necessary because the entrance was not good. More information. (click here)

2. Roland Meerman has developed a computer program and gives it the appropriate name; Birdwatch.

3. The last step was to let the computer communicate with the electronics.

An object (in our situation a Common Swift) that we detected by the sensors, are registered by the computer and recorded by date and time. A Common Swift passed 2 sensors as well as coming in and going out. Because of this, the directions of the movements could be registered. After all, when the Common Swift comes in, first will be activated the first sensor, after that the second one, while at leaving first will be activated the second and after that the first one.

The computer can give the next analyses.

To hitch on box 9 or 10.
Common Swift goes into box 9.
Common Swift leaves box 9.
Common Swift goes into box 10.
Common Swift leaves box 10.
Common Swift is sitting in the exit of box 9.
Common Swift is sitting in the exit of box 10.

The analyse: Common Swift is sitting in the exit of the box, comes after he is sitting in the exit for 4 seconds.

In 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2005 we have been successfully to make a complete registration from the arrive of the first Common Swift until the leaving of the last Common Swift. The result is a total digital log of the whole breeding seasons with rider our own observations, this will be very important information. You can find this logs with the annual reports.