Birds chirping is one of the hallmarks of Spring and usually a wonderful thing to hear. It is less wonderful when you hear those sound coming from your fireplace!

We have gotten some calls lately about strange noises coming from chimneys, and some folks thought that they had bats in there. The sounds they were hearing were like a high-pitched whirring, rather than the more common chirping sounds. However that sound likely isn’t from bats or mice or anything else, but recent bird hatchlings!


It can be very annoying to have birds and their babies nesting in your chimney, and there are other hazards associated with it, but it is important to remember that several species of migratory birds are federally protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, which makes it illegal to harm the birds or even remove them from your chimney.

The most common migratory bird found in our chimneys here in Oregon is the swift, but others include ospreys, rufous hummingbirds, and black-chinned hummingbirds. They are protected because these birds are endangered and particularly at risk during the nesting period.

If any of these protected birds have made their way into your chimney, you will likely have to make peace with them until they leave in the Fall, but they will want to return there next Spring. If they are not protected birds, we can help remove them without hurting the babies or the mother. American Chimney & Masonry can advise you how to best deal with the situation, whatever it is.


Definitely do not light any fires while they are in there, and make sure all of the nesting material and debris is gone before you do, as that constitutes a major fire hazard. Also, clean up any bird droppings regularly. Some birds can carry a fungus that can cause a nasty lung disease called histoplasmosis. Your cats or dogs may become more interested in the new residents of the fireplace, so make sure you are able to keep them out of there.


Regardless of what kind of birds are in there, the most essential thing is that as soon as they are gone, you have a chimney cap installed. Chimney caps keep birds and animals out of the chimney, as well as prevent sparks from escaping and causing fires outside of the chimney.

American Chimney & Masonry can help you choose the best chimney cap for your chimney and install it. If you have questions about birds in your chimney and chimney cap solutions, CONTACT US today!

Portland Chimney Repair – Service Area

Located right here in Oregon, our Portland chimney sweep technicians provide the best in chimney repair, fireplace installation and dryer vent care in the Greater Portland-Metro area. From NE Portland down to SE Portland, Tualatin and Oregon City in the south, from Pleasant Valley in the east to Beaverton and Sherwood in the west – when it comes to your chimney, fireplace and vents, we hope you’ll call American Chimney & Masonry! We are the most trusted Portland Chimney Repair company!

Ready To Make A Chimney Sweep Appointment?

To schedule an appointment with one of our expert chimney repair technicians, please call 503-644-0393. With over 19,000 satisfied customers since 1989, we are ready for more! We look forward to visiting with you soon about your fireplace and chimney sweep needs.