Spring is the time of year when birds of all kinds make nests and lay their eggs. For Jackdaws in particular, this often means finding a suitable chimney.

Keep a look out for twigs falling into the grate and bird activity around your chimney top. If you try to light your fire with a nest in the flue, then smoke will enter the room and may even ignite the dry twigs of the nest. This is a common cause of chimney fires in the autumn where the nest has gone undetected since the spring. Worse still, if you have a gas fire, Carbon Monoxide may enter the room which you will not notice unless you have a CO alarm. Your chimney sweep can supply an alarm if none is fitted.

Your chimney sweep can also advise you about removing the nest. However this cannot be done in May or June, since it is illegal to disturb any nest with eggs or live young in it.

To prevent Jackdaws nesting in your chimney, it is important to have a suitable cage or cowl fitted. This is especially important if you have had a nest in the past, as they like to return to the same nesting site. Your chimney sweep can advise you of the best type of cowl to fit depending on your fireplace or appliance.

Chris Wright trades as Wilkins Chimney Sweep (Newark) and is a full member of The Association of Professional Independent Chimney Sweeps (APICS) and a HETAS approved chimney sweep.

Tel: 01636 616425 

www.wilkinschimneysweep/co.uk/newark