2nd Annual Event Helps Ottawa Residents Peek Inside City’s Most Important Chimneys

Media Advisory

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Who: Hosted by Nature Canada
Speakers include: Alex MacDonald, CBC Radio 1’s In Town and Out weekly bird tweeter and Senior Conservation Manager at Nature Canada

What: A Swift Evening Out is an outdoor event featuring presentations, activities and easy birdwatching to raise public awareness of the Chimney Swift, a provincially and nationally threatened bird found in Ottawa. Event participants will observe the sunset behaviour of the Chimney Swift; each
evening the Swifts fly into suitable chimneys and human structures throughout the region – often hundreds of birds at a time – where they roost
for the night in large groups. The birds dive headfirst into the chimneys, reaching speeds of 60 km/hr before entering, making this behaviour
very impressive to behold.

Where: 755 Somerset Street West, Ottawa. The event will begin at the Dalhousie Community Centre and at 7:50pm will transition to the grounds of the Dominican University College, home to one of the region’s most important chimney roosts.

When: Thursday, August 11th, 2016 – 7:00 pm to 8:45 pm.

Why: Ottawa is home to nationally significant numbers of Chimney Swifts, whose numbers have declined by over 95% in the last 40 years. Despite this, many people are unaware of the Swifts’ presence or their plight. We want to change this. Additionally, many property owners misunderstand what they can do to help Chimney Swifts, such as delaying routine chimney maintenance until after the migration in early September. This event will help to raise public awareness of the plight of this amazing species.

Interviews: Interviews may be scheduled before, during or after the event. Opportunities to photograph the activities and the birds can be accommodated during the event. Photographs will be available upon request following the event.

Contact: Alex MacDonald, Senior Conservation Manager, Nature Canada
613-324-7003 (mobile); amacdonald@naturecanada.ca

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Nature Canada is the oldest national nature conservation charity in Canada. Our mission is to protect and conserve nature in Canada by engaging Canadians and by advocating on behalf of nature. Over the past 75 years, Nature Canada has helped protect over 63 million acres of parks and wildlife areas in Canada and countless species that depend on this habitat. Today, Nature Canada represents a network of more than 45,000 members and supporters and more than 350 nature organizations across the country, with affiliates in every province.