If you notice a strange noise in your home, the explanation is probably something pretty simple and obvious. If there’s a scratching and peeping noise coming from your chimney, there’s a good chance that some type of animal that has taken up residence there. It could be a raccoon or squirrel, or it could be some type of bird. Your chimney makes a great place for animals and birds to raise a family because it’s out of the wind and elements, it’s dark and warm, and it’s a safe place out of reach of predators.
If you’ve ever looked up in the sky and seen a cigar shaped, gray, shadowy looking bird, you’ve probably seen a chimney swift. These tiny birds are really quite remarkable; they migrate south to Peru for the winter, then find their way back north in the springtime to mate and raise a family. Back in the early part of U.S. history, chimney swifts made their nests in hollowed out trees or caves, but when the United States became more developed, these structures became less available and so the swifts had to find another place to raise their young. These resourceful little birds, intuiting the similarities between a chimney and a hollow log, started using chimneys to build their nests and raise their families.
The only reasons that chimney swifts stop flying are to roost or raise their young. They even eat while in flight, which is great because they get rid of some of those pesky bugs that can drive us crazy, like flies, mosquitoes, and wasps. In fact, a family of chimney swifts can eat up to 12,000 insects every day. You can see that these birds are pretty great to have around. A problem is, however, that when a pair of chimney swifts take up residence in your chimney and raise their young, they can be really noisy. Another problem is that when they leave, they leave behind their nest, and that can cause a smaller area for smoke to escape and could even cause a chimney fire if it catches a spark when you next burn a fire in your fireplace.
How to Prevent Chimney Swifts
Another problem with chimney swifts is that once they are nesting in your chimney, it’s illegal to disturb or remove them while they are breeding as stated in the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. Once they’re in, they’re in for the season. Because they’re such noisy critters, this might be a real problem for you, so the best way to make sure you aren’t bothered is to make sure they don’t get in there in the first place. A chimney cap can be a strong line of defense against these birds getting into your chimney; just make sure that it’s in a great state of repair. When you call SirVent Chimney and Venting Service, be sure to mention that preventing chimney swifts is something you’re wanting to take care of and we’ll make sure that everything is tight and secure and that your home is kept free from any unwelcome critters!