Sunday, 23 October 2016

Trumpeter Swans (Cygnes trompettes) along the Grand River

23 March 2016
rare Charitable Research Reserve
Cambridge, ON

      Miriam and I do bird monitoring at rare each weekend, spring and fall, and the route we do on Sunday mornings is called the East Cliff Forest Route, which takes us along the bank of the Grand River.
     This morning, for the very first time, we observed Trumpeter Swans Cygnus buccinator along the river, one adult and three cygnets to be precise.

     This species migrates in family groups, so it was a bit of a mystery as to why the second adult was not present also. As may be seen, the young birds are now fully as big as their parent.
     The adult bird seems to have some king of vegetation wrapped around the front of its body, but this seemed not to impede it in any way, and I suspect that upon taking flight it would quickly shake it loose.

     It was a very special sighting and certainly Trumpeter Swan was "the bird of the day."

     We were accompanied this morning by Jade Bassler, a University of Waterloo environmental studies undergraduate, who added much to the conviviality of our walk. As you have learned from previous blog posts, Jade has been out to SpruceHaven with us a couple of times, and both Miriam and I will look forward to doing more with this enthusiastic, committed young woman. It was our pleasure to have her along today.


  1. Hi Both, what a super visit out for you all, and again another set of super images by Miriam. These really are beautiful Swans, I can understand as to why you say "bird of the day". Have a good week. Regards John

  2. Hi. It would be nice to see sometimes that the swan. The magnificent bird.

  3. Fantásticas fotos de los cisnes trompeteros, una especie que no la vemos por mi territorio. Me ha gustado mucho el reportaje, un fuerte abrazo desde España.

  4. Hi David.

    Wonderful this Swans.

    Greetings from Patricia

  5. They are beautiful birds and I am glad you managed to get the shots to share with us. I wonder what happened to the second adult? Have a good day Diane

  6. Hello David,
    Very nice pictures of these trumpeter swans. It's a wonderful kind of swan.
    So nice all by each other.

    Greetings, Marco

  7. The Trumpeter Swans are fantastic, you caught them beautiful.

  8. Magnificence pictures of these beautiful swans David.
    Greetings Tinie

  9. I saw family groups of Whooper Swans last weekend too............

  10. Let's hope the other parent was somewhere around! Here where we have a whooper swan couple nesting every summer, we often see the cygnets with one of the parents only (and we joke the other one is having an afternoon off). When they are migrating, one would expect to see them all together...

  11. Lovely sight David,Adult with young,love it.

  12. Hi David,
    It must bewonderful to watch the these Trumpeter Swans, a species I have never seen yet in the wild.
    I hope nothing happened to the other adult bird...
    warm hugs to share with Miriam :)

  13. Trumpeters or Whoopers, magnificent birds both. The noise itself is simply wonderful.

    As for what is happening on the other side of your welcome divide, I think it's best called Hobson's Choice. What is the population of USA? 325 million? And these are the two best candidates they can find? I give up.

  14. What a lovely sight.
    So pleased you are able to share these photo's with us.

    All the best Jan

  15. Beautiful trumpeters...I wonder what happened to the mate though. Great volunteer work you two are doing and again glad for the student involvement. Couldn't help but notice the exchange between you and Phil above and you know we agree. It is a sad time.

  16. I have these swans never actually seen.
    However, the wild swans emt yellow / black beak and the small swans.
    Those that you show here is a new species for me.
    Wonderful to see and thanks for sharing.
    Greetings, Helma