SWANS

Black Necked Swan

Adults average 102 to 124 cm (40 to 49 in) and weigh 3.5-6.7 kg (7.7-14.8 lbs). The wingspan ranges from 135 to 177 cm (53 to 70 in). The body plumage is white with a black neck, head and greyish bill. It has a red knob near the base of the bill and white stripe behind eye. The sexes are similar, with the female slightly smaller. The cygnet has a light grey plumage with black bill and feet. The smallest member in its genus, it is found in freshwater marshes, lagoon and lake shores in southern South America. The Black-necked Swan breeds in Chilean Southern Zone, Patagonia, Tierra del Fuego and on the Falkland Islands. In the austral winter, this species migrates northwards to Paraguay and southern Brazil The wetlands created by the Great Chilean Earthquake like Carlos Anwandter Nature Sanctuary in Cruces River have become important population centers for the Black-necked Swan

The Black Swan (Cygnus atratus) is a large waterbird, a species of swan, which

breeds mainly in the southeast and southwest regions of Australia. The species was hunted to extinction in New Zealand, but later reintroduced. They are monogamous breeders that share incubation duties and cygnet rearing between the sexes Our Swans are different in that they have tended to breed twice a year. Also, contrary to belief, they ARE NOT sociable birds

Black Swans are primarily black-feathered birds, with white flight feathers. The bill is bright red, with a pale bar and tip; and legs and feet are greyish-black. Cobs (males) are slightly larger than pens (females), with a longer and straighter bill. Cygnets (immature birds) are a greyish-brown with pale-edged feathers.

A mature Black Swan measures between 110 and 142 centimetres (43 and 56 in) in length and weighs 3.7–9 kilograms (8.2–20 lb). Its wing span is between 1.6 and 2 metres (5.2 and 6.6 ft).[2][3] The neck is long (relatively the longest neck among the swans) and curved in an “S”-shape.

The Black Swan utters a musical and far reaching bugle-like sound,. It can also whistle, especially when disturbed while breeding and nesting

The Coscoroba Swan (Coscoroba) is a species of waterfowl inhabiting southern

South America. It is the smallest of the birds called “swans”, but still a large species of waterfowl, averaging 4.2 kg (9.3 lbs), 1 m (3.3 ft) long and 1.57 m (5.2 ft) across the wings. It belongs to the subfamily Anserinae in the family of ducks, swans, and geese, Anatidae. It is placed in the monotypic genus Coscoroba.

Male Coscoroba Swans weigh 3.8–5.4 kg (8.4–12 lb) and females weigh 3.2–4.5 kg (7.1–9.9 lb). Length is from 87.5 to 115 cm (34.4 to 45 in) and wingspan is 155 to 160 cm (61 to 63 in).[2][3][4] has white plumage except for black tips to the outer six primary feathers, although this black is often barely visible on the closed wing. In flight, the black wing tips are conspicuous. The bird has a red beak, legs and feet. They look somewhat more like geese than swans. The female looks almost identical to the male. The cygnet is a patchy color, with brown and gray hues. The Coscoroba Swan is also lacking the black mask that other swans have where their lores are between the eyes and beak. They look like a very small swan in body and look like a

goose in the head. Eggs have a measure 89 X 61 mm, with averages of 82 to 94 53 to 67 mm, with an average weight of 170 grams and range from 129 to 203 grams

The Trumpeter Swan (Cygnus buccinator) is the heaviest bird native to North

America and is, on average, the largest extant waterfowl species on earth Adults usually measure 138–165 cm (54–65 in) long, though large males can range up to 180 cm (71 in) or more. The weight of adult birds is typically 7–13.6 kg (15–30 lb), with an average weight in males of 11.9 kg (26 lb) and 9.4 kg (21 lb) in females. The wingspan ranges from 185 to 250 cm (73 to 98 in), with the individual wing chords measuring 60–68 cm (24–27 in).The species has upright posture and a straight neck at all times. The Trumpeter Swan has a large, wedge-shaped black bill that can, in some cases, be minimally lined with salmon-pink coloration around the mouth. The bill measures 10.5–12 cm (4.1–4.7 in). The legs are gray-pink in colour, though in some birds can appear yellowish gray to even black. The cygnets (juveniles) are grey in appearance, becoming white after the first year.

The Whooper Swan (pronounced Hooper)

It is large ,with a length of 140–165 cm (55–65 in) and a wingspan of 205–275 cm (81–108 in). Weight typically is in the range of 7.4–14 kg (16–31 lb), with an average of 9.8–11.4 kg (22–25 lb) for males and 8.2–9.2 kg (18–20 lb) for females. Among standard measurements, the wing chord is 56.2–63.5 cm (22.1–25.0 in), the tarsus is 10.4–13 cm (4.1–5.1 in) and the bill is 9.2–11.6 cm (3.6–4.6 in). Whooper swans require large areas of water to live in, especially when they are still growing, because their body weight cannot be supported by their legs for extended periods of time. The whooper swan spends much of its time swimming, straining the water for food, or eating plants that grow on the bottom Whooper swans have a deep honking call and, despite their size, are powerful fliers. Whooper swans can migrate hundreds or even thousands of miles to their wintering sites in southern Europe and eastern Asia. Whooper swans pair for life, and their cygnets stay with them all winter; they are sometimes joined by offspring from previous years. Their preferred breeding habitat is wetland, but semi-domesticated birds will build a nest anywhere close to water. Both the male and female help build the nest, and the male will stand guard over the nest while the female incubates. The female will usually lay 4-7 eggs (exceptionally 12). The cygnets hatch after about 36 days and have a grey or brown plumage. The cygnets can fly at an age of 120 to 150 days.

Whistler Swans, there are two populations of what used to be called Whistler swans, now referred to as Tundra swans, the whistler name came from the sound of their flight not their voices. The swans come from North America

The Tundra swans live long lives from ten to twenty-five years. The take just over three months to go from egg to flying bird, take about three years to grow to reproductive age then spend a year going steady before they mate for life. If one of the partners dies the other lives the rest of their life as a widow or widower

Polish Mute Swan

The polish mute swan is a ‘pure white’ version of a mute swan. The legs and feet are a pinkish-grey colour instead of the usual black colour.

A pigment deficiency of a gene in the sex chromosomes is what causes the whiteness.

When a female mute swan inherits only one melanin-deficient chromosome she will be a polish swan, whereas the male of the same parents will be normal. If the next generation is produced by two of their offspring the brood will contain numbers of both polish and normal cygnets of either sex.

Polish swans were given their name when they were imported from the Polish coast on the Baltic sea into London around about 1800. Mistakenly thought to be a new species they were given the name ‘Cygnus immutabilis’ (changeless swan).

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  • COME ALONG

    • Find out about the history of the Little Acorn Wood.
    • Learn about the regeneration of the Waterfowl Ponds.
    • Explore the Bug Trail.
  • OPENING TIMES

    Monday          9am - Dusk
    Tuesday         9am - Dusk
    Wednesday    9am - Dusk
    Thursday        9am - Dusk
    Friday             9am - Dusk
    Saturday         9am - Dusk
    Sunday           9am - Dusk
  • DIRECTIONS

    From M2 follow signs to Ballymena. At Seven Towers Roundabout, follow M2 to sign for Ecos Centre. Turn right off slip road following sign to Broughshane. Turn left at the mini roundabout in Broughshane and park in the car park on Knowhead Road.