Mute Swans on the Fox River in downtown Waukesha Wisconsin. A pair of Mute Swans have stopped in for a visit here on the river with some open water as temperatures have eased in recent days. Most places in the area are still froze over. Their stay so far has been about 5 days. The Mute Swans have put on great shows for bikers, pedestrians and photographers along the river walk with their beauty. Photographs were taken on March 17, 2014.
Binomial name: Cygnus olor
Category: Duck, Geese, and Swans
Size: 50”-60” long, 84”-94” wing span
Weight: 12.0 -31.0 lbs.
Habitat: Prefer shallow lakes and ponds, estuaries, sometimes bogs and wetlands.
Diet: Aquatic plants and animals.
Nesting: The nest is an open bowl found in a large mound of aquatic rushes, vegetation and grasses, usually lined with down or soft vegetation. This nest is normally found in a secluded area on an island, lake or river bank, or reed bed. Swans will lay 6-11 white to pale green eggs at a rate of 1 egg per day. They will hatch about 35 days from when the last egg is laid.
Facts: A native to central and northern Eurasia the species was introduced into North American in the late 1800’s. It was brought into ponds of parks and estates for ornamental purposes. Their aggressive behavior threatens native waterfowl. They can consume 4-8 lbs. of plants a day and uproot native plants that are usually a food source and habitat for native birds and other native species. Management practices are continually being put in place for the control of this Swan species.