I wonder how many readers are fortunate enough to have swifts nesting under their eaves this year.

Since 1990 their numbers have plummeted 50%.

May is a special time for me as I eagerly await their appearance in our skies and thrill at the sound of their "screams" as they glide high or dash between houses at breakneck speed (they can fly up to 70mph).

They are migratory and return to us (if we are lucky enough) from Africa, south of The Sahara, a journey of some 7000 miles, which for a tiny creature is incredible. They may face many challenges enroute and indeed some will perish.

I find it incredibility sad that on arrival at their destination, which is faithfully to the same nest year after year, exhausted, only to discover that in their absence the entrance site has been blocked by new fascia boarding.

There is a solution - please consider siting a swift nesting box (which they may not use the first season, so please be patient!). These can be purchased from the RSPB who also have instructions for making your own if preferred. Hopefully they will then be able breed and rear their young, who have only three months to grow enough before tackling migration again.

These amazing birds are always on the wing and clock many miles during their lifetime. They need our help. Please pass the word on.

I hear a familiar cry - I'm off to the garden now for a good seat to watch a thrilling aerial performance.

Julie Coleman. Urmston.