Monday, February 9, 2009

Thinking about the Trumpeter Swan


I really am getting spring fever. I'm already planning a return trip to Seney National Wildlife Refuge (located in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan) where I saw an abundance of Trumpeter Swans. They were reintroduced to the refuge in 1990's and have been flourishing ever since. I just love their beauty and grace. Some fun facts:

  • It gets its' name from its' trumpet like call
  • They can live a long time - up to 24 years old.
  • Most (not all) Trumpeter Swans mate for life. They form their pair bonds at ages 3-4.
  • They weigh between 21 - 30 lbs.
  • On land, they stand about 4 feet tall.
  • Largest water fowl species native to North America
  • Michigan, Minnesota & Wisconsin have launched Trumpeter Swan Recovery programs.


Patsy said...

I wish we could all go with you. I know we will get to see lovely photo's from your trip. Like the trivia info. Give us more I like to know about the birds you post. We never see most here in south that you have.

Anonymous said...

So graceful! I hope you'll share lots of pictures from your trip.

Tina said...

You read my mind, Shelley, we are also heading out this week to see the trumpeter swans...I can't wait. I love your picture...oh, it does look soooo spring like with the sun glancing off the water like that. thanks for all the info,I enjoyed reading it!!

Kim said...

Such a pretty picture Shelley. I can't wait to see the other photos you take of these gorgeous creatures.

Mary said...

A lovely bird to think about and a lovely photo of it. I'll look forward to the photos you take when you go back! I didn't know any of this about the Trumpeter Swan, so this was very educational.

Betsy Banks Adams said...

Beautiful swans aren't they??? I can understand why you want to return to see more of them!!!

Have a great day.

Dorothy said...

Hi Shelley,
They are beautiful birds! Thanks for the info about them. I didn't know they were so large!!

troutbirder said...

We went down to the Mississippi Friday looking for Golden Eagles (fairly rare here in Minnesota). No Goldens seen BUT saw my first wintering Trumpeters instead. They were too far away for any decent pictures. Yours is GREAT!

Nick S said...

I totally here you when you say you're getting spring fever :-)
We still have snow here, and it doesn't usually totally melt till the end of March-mid April.

Lovely recent pics. That Swan is a beauty. Hope you see more !

Deborah Godin said...

I hadn't heard of this nature spot, although I probably should have, my parents were both Yoopers, and I spent summers there as a kid. Maybe that's the answer, I was too young at the time, and my folks weren't nature nuts. If you go, we'd like a full report!!

Peggy said...

This photo has such beautiful soft colors! Spring! Bring it on!

Dave's Bird Watching Blog said...

It's too early for spring fever...we still have the opportunity for some good snowstorms! :-)

Willard said...

A beautiful photograph. We have Tundra Swans here at times in early spring, but no trumpeter swans. It is good to get so see a photograph of one.

Jenny said...

I love the colours in this photo Shelley. Very fresh looking. I think Iowa also have a recovery program going for Trumpeter Swans.

This Is My Blog - fishing guy said...

Shelly: That is a beautiful bird but they can be a little mean.

Shelley said...

B & P - that would be a lovely blogger trip!

Mildred - Seney is a photographer and nature lover's dream! :)

Tina - I'm so envious - I'll look for pics on your site!

Kallen - the year before - I could only find the juveniles and they had that rust colored patch on their heads - still pretty though.

Mary - they piqued my interest - especially since I had heard about their population decline.

Betsy - I guess I've never met a bird or a water fowl I never liked! ha,ha!

Dorothy - it's funny, when I saw them at the park - I didn't even realize that they were that big!

Troutbirder - how great that you saw them!

Nick - usually I'm patient thru the seasons but for some reason I'm very anxious! (I hope to be picking up my new lens soon and then I'll really want to get out in some good weather!)

Deborah - you would love the place! (P.S. My parents weren't nature nuts either - but my mom did like birds.)

Hannibal - today I saw a male cardinal courting a female - spring must be coming - right?!

Dave - are you raining on my parade?! ha,ha!!

Willard - thank you! I hope to get closer shots this year - they've been very camera shy the last 2 years of attempts.

Jenny - thank you! And glad to hear Iowa has a program for them too!

Fishing guy - true - but I think the canada geese takes the prize! I had one nip my jacket this year while it's buddy was hissing at me.

Anonymous said...

I've never seen one..thank you for the information and have a good trip.

Coy Hill said...

Those are some really big birds Shelly! We have Tundra Swans pass through here on their migrations. They are impressive birds but nowhere near as big as your Trumpeters.

Kelly said... beautiful and big! Whenever I see or read about Trumpeters my mind goes back to the children's book by E.B. White, "The Trumpet of the Swan."

Heather said...

Such an elegant and stately bird, and a beautiful photo of it. I can't wait to see more photos from your trip.
By the way, please stop by my blog when you get a moment - I have an award that I'm passing along to you.

Barbie ♥ said...

You're giving me spring fever too, Shelley - with this post! Lovely, graceful swan picture and I can't wait until you go to the refuge and bring back more great pictures!

Unknown said...

WOW WOW. That's a fabulous image. It's serenity personified Shelley

Gardener's Garden said...

Shelley this is a great shot and I love the added info. At a wildlife reserve close to me we've been seeing three dozen swans and this is probably why. I even had a chance to catch a juvenile that was brown and white.

Leedra said...

you captured this lovely swan so well.

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Anonymous said...

Your photo does look like spring! Seney has been a core area for the Michigan restoration efforts. Forty-four two year old birds were released between 1991-1993 and by August of 2005 a then high count of 230 adult birds was recorded. Let us know what you find on your outing - the Trumpeter Swan Society will be launching a Citizen Science Monitoring project soon and we are particularly interested in the return of birds that migrated south for the winter. We have a lot of great information on our website and just started a Blog Come visit us there and thanks for sharing the photo!
Peg Abbott
The Trumpeter Swan Society