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Exeter Wild City Swift Project

Devon Wildlife Trust/Exeter City Council

Swifts_C_Erich_KaiserThis project aims to be an exemplar for making a link between our immediate environment (ie houses and streets in Exeter), the wider global environment and ecosystem functions. It is being delivered by Devon Wildlife Trust in partnership with Exeter City Council.  One of the largest tasks is to establish a map showing where there are swift colonies in Exeter in order to help guide subsequent conservation action and practical work.

DBRC has already produced a map containing 2010 survey data; and this will be added to the outputs from the current work.

During 2011 DBRC will be engaged to:

  • Collate survey responses (casual records and postal survey card responses) and validate these responses.
  • Carry out systematic ground truthing of data received.
  • Create a GIS point map and maintain an associated database.
  • Provide a report on the methodology of the systematic ground truthing and findings.

Swifts are in decline in the UK.  One reason is likely to be the decline in availability of nesting sites. Modern buildings and repairs/restoration of older properties usually fill in the cavities that swifts utilise. Another reason could be the chronic decline in food source availability, a matter directly related to wider biodiversity loss. 

Our client will use the DBRC outputs to:

  • Ensure Swift nest sites are protected in Exeter
  • Increase the density and breeding range of Swifts by increasing nest sites.
  • Ensure adoption of Swift friendly guidelines by planners.
  • Increase the understanding of this species conservation with key stakeholder groups and the general public.

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