Diagram for Re-Nesting Chimney Swifts
Before starting with any of the options listed below, please put a towel or blanket in the fireplace to provide soft landing in case babies fall again.
Put the birds in a small wicker basket or t-shirt lined* box. Secure it on the smoke shelf inside the chimney just above the fireplace, weighted or wedged in such a way that it does not tip over when the parents land on. Listen for occasional loud chattering which can indicate the babies are being fed.
Wrap a t-shirt* around the head of a broom or mop (like a giant “q-tip”) and perch the babies on it. (This works better with older, stronger babies.) Carefully wedge the broom against the side of the chimney, resting the end in the fireplace or even up on the smoke shelf, if possible. Listen for occasional loud chattering which can indicate the babies are being fed.
*Claws may easily become tangled in loosely woven fabrics, so use a snag-free cloth.
If you can access the roof and top of the chimney, secure a basket or t-shirt lined box to a rope or bungie cord, then lower into the chimney. Listen for occasional loud chattering which can indicate them being fed.
Hatchling Chimney Swifts
Thank you for attempting to re-nest them. They are a highly threatened species, and so every life saved counts. Please keep us posted.