1,000 Birds Flock Together in Fireplace Chimney at a Montecito Home

When the birds didn't just fly back out the way they entered, firefighters and animal services workers used some ingenuity to free the flock

Birds were trapped in a fireplace Sunday April 25, 2021 at a Montecito home.
Montecito Fire

Birds of a feather flock together, but this flock took things too far and ended up in need of help from Southern California firefighters and animal services.

Firefighters were called to a home in the Santa Barbara County community of Montecito Sunday night and found about 1,000 small birds trapped in the chimney, the Montecito Fire Protection District said in a social media post.

Firefighters and county animal services workers were hoping the birds, identified as swifts, would fly up and out the flue overnight. When authorities returned Monday morning, the birds were still trapped by the screen at the base of the fireplace.

It was time for some ingenuity.

Workers designed a chute system that funneled the birds out of the fireplace and through the home’s back doors.

"Every day is different in the fire service," the department said in its post, which included video of the birds behind a fireplace screen.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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