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Fatal mistakes

When you try to help a Common Swift you are in danger of making some fatal mistakes through widespread but never the less false recommendations, that seem to be passed on from generation to generation.  It is high time that these wrong ideas are corrected, otherwise you will harm the bird instead of doing it any good!

=> Never throw a Common Swift into the air!
This is the worst mistake of all. There seems to be a widespread conviction that a Common Swift cannot lift off from the ground by its own.
This is absolutely wrong!

A healthy Common Swift with fully-developed plumage will immediately lift off into the air if put down on the ground. You will never find one of them on the ground of its own free will. Common Swifts are high-performance flyers and spend their whole life flying in the air, with the exception only of that time when they raise their young. If a Common Swift comes down to the ground it is for very pressing reasons only. It is either injured, exhausted or simply too young to be able to fly. If you throw the bird into the air, it will invariably fall down again, thereby breaking its bones, tearing its sinews and suffering great pain. You cannot “teach” a nestling with its undeveloped plumage how to fly. A healty adult Common Swift flies. It does not need our help!


=> Never feed anything else but insects!
When you have found a helpless bird your first impulse will probably be to feed it with “something". The most unbelievable things have been found in the stomachs of unfortunate Common Swifts, for example stones, (that children gave it “just for fun", thereby killing it.) or “gifts" from the kitchen table such as salami, liver, mozzarella, strawberries, almonds etc. Even nowadays some so-called bird experts or bird-books recommend minced meat, meal-worms, maggots, earthworms, bird seed, oat-meal, baby food, dog or cat food, or other food mixtures. All these substances have only one thing in common: They will invariably harm and eventually kill the bird. Common Swifts eat nothing but insect. It`s as simple as that!


=> A Common Swift is no pet!
Common Swifts do not regard man as an enemy, they lack that innate fear that we know from other wild birds. This may lead to the wrong idea that a Common Swift can become a pet and family member. There have been cases, when the finders were not ready to release the bird because of its supposed “tameness”. Nothing worse can happen to that gregarious and enduring flyer. When you nurse a Common Swift always bear in mind that you are in charge of the freest animal between heaven and earth for a limited space of time only. It is your obligation to let it return to its rightfull living space as soon as possible.
“Your" Common Swift does not belong to you, it belongs only to itself.

Besides, the Common Swift – like all other wildlife- is protected by law. It is a specially protected species and should on no account stay longer in the hand of man than absolutely necessary to recover its ability to return to its natural living-space.

Buchenstraße 9
D-65933 Frankfurt

Tel.:+49(69)35 35 15 04
We accept only swifts! Questions regarding other bird species will not be answered!
Information regarding other bird species: http://www.wildvogelhilfe.org/
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