Swiftlet nests farming – Part 3

Video Caption: Swiftlet returning to their nesting heaven in the evening.

The last and final part of the write-up is more of a discussion on the most important aspect of swiftlet farming. One can spend millions on the buildings and further tens of thousands on refurbishing the swiftlet’s nesting heaven. However if the swiftlet so call ‘hotel’ is low on occupancy, it just doesn’t justify the trouble and the investment poured into the project.

Therefore it is of utmost importance that we provide a proper plan on how to attract and guide the switflet into the ‘hotel’. Speakers and tweeters will have to be placed strategically around and inside the building to constantly attract and invite the swiftlet to check into the hotel. Sex sells, therefore most attraction CDs sold in the market are swiftlet mating sound recorded directly from existing swiftlet farms and/or artificially synthesized using digital ‘wavetable’ synthesizer or software based sound synthesizer. With some skills in digital sound editing, one can even experiment with the best available swiftlet chirps or the most preferable chirps to attract one of the most common white-nest swiftlet species in peninsular Malaysia, that is the Aerodramus Fuciphagus.

If you neither have the time nor expertise, you can always engage a swiftlet consultant to do all the testing and installation of the sound systems for you. However, please be careful as you need to differentiate between the real consultant and the so-call wanabe ‘con’sultant.  Another alternative is to purchase the swiftlet chirping CDs from the various Internet merchants and conduct your own experiment with a test speaker set on location. Once you are fully satisfied, you just need to copy the sound file digitally into the most common USB thumbdrive for use with a digital sound amplifier. If possible make sure, you set the ‘loudness’ of the sound (measured in decibel) to the most acceptable or optimum level (usually within a range of figures) or just do some trial and error testing on location. City and municipal councils that issue swiftlet farming permits usually do not allow the sound level to be higher than 40 decibels. So be smart about it and not to blast the speakers like there is no tomorrow.

Most swiftlet farm houses use 2 types of sound CD. One is used externally to attract and invite the swiftlet and the other one used internally to mimic the mating chirps or the swiftlet’s chicks chirps. Once the correct CDs are selected, the next important item to consider is the standard CD player and amplifier with a collection of speaker/tweeter sets. CD players if used 24×7 in swiftlet house, would have a very short lifespan and you would need a backup on site almost on a permanent basis. Therefore it’s worth considering the latest dedicated digital swiftlet caller box or special digital amplifier systems that read the sound files directly from the USB thumb drive or from the dedicated SD/MS/CF card slots. Solid state memory chips are probably about 10 times more reliable than the older CD/amplifier combo.

The whole sound systems should be housed in a dedicated enclosed shelf with its own air circulation system to prevent overheating and contamination from birds’ dropping. For bigger outfit, air conditioning system is always an option. Since the sound system is one of the most important aspect of swiftlet farming, it pays to dedicate some time and effort to ensure the most logical and authentic setup for your swiftlet home.

At the very least, you could do everything humanly possible to minimize your structural risks of swiftlet farming and not leave everything to only luck. But still, I would like to wish you best of luck in your endeavor as you would still need a bit of luck to succeed. Alternatively, you could bring in a feng shui master to change your fortune, but ……………… that is another story.


  1. a very comprehensive write up of swiftlet farming. Good work. Perhaps, you can impart more of your knowledge to the readers, e.g. harvesting and sales.

  2. hmm.. good English and cleverly written. I’m proud of you so keep on writing.

  3. The London bunch says:

    Zoe is right…good piece! That’s a lot of birds flyiing in…We look forward to see them soon.

  4. Hey… Hope to see you guys soon.

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