A Trumpeter Swan and Tundra Swan have been spending time together at one of our local lakes. Tundra Swans don’t usually get this far south and I wanted some photos. This is our second rare bird visitor this winter. In December we had a very rare Tundra Bean-Goose that spent a couple of weeks with our Canada Geese before moving on (links below). The Tundra Bean-Goose was supposed to be in far Northern Europe or Russia.
Home Lake is part of our municipal water facility. I was photographing Canada Geese from the southeast shore of the lake when both swans came in for a landing (photo above). The Trumpeter Swan was in the lead.
Both swans decided to spend time on the ice so I went to the dam on the south side of the lake to have a better shooting location. The beak of the Tundra Swan still shows some of the pink of a juvenile. When fully mature the beak will be all black. The dark color between the beak and the eye is much thinner in the Tundra Swan. The Trumpeter Swan has some the characteristic red “lipstick” on the lower jaw. The beak and head of a Tundra Swan has more of a curve while the beak and head of the Trumpeter Swan is more straight.
After time on the ice they went out on the lake. The Trumpeter Swan is a larger species than the Tundra Swan which is obvious when they are together.The Tundra Swan did some feeding. Sometimes they stayed together and other times they were apart.