Tundra Swans along the Niagara River
By: Pat Coate
While driving along West River Parkway on Grand Island I saw several groups of tundra swans swimming and feeding near shore. In total, there were at least 30 swans – the most I have ever seen at one time.
Most of the groups of swans scattered along the island’s shore had Canada geese mixed in. Though they were only a short swim from the Canadian border the geese were on the U.S. side of the Niagara River!
I think of Canada geese as large birds but the swans were markedly bigger as shown above.
There were a number of immature swans too – two are shown above. They are similar in size to the adults but are darkly colored instead of white and the bills have not turned fully black yet.
Though a bit hard to see in the photos, one of the field marks for adult tundra swans is a yellow spot in front of the eyes. It is somewhat visible on the swan on the right in the above picture.
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