Mar 21 2013

Tundra Swan Quartet

This year snow geese and tundra swans peaked in eastern Pennsylvania in mid to late February.

I missed their migration but Meredith Lombard visited Middle Creek Wildlife Management Area and captured this video of tundra swan interactions.

These four swans are really hooting it up.  The quartet began when two pairs encouraged their mates with lean-forward and wing-quiver calls.   But the quivering wing display is also used in antagonistic encounters.  When the males got too close the dominant male had had enough.  He rushed the other one.

Whoa!  The less aggressive male immediately sat on the water in a submissive posture and the situation defused.  Watch him curl his neck down in an S position and look away.

Tundra swans can make music together.  Sometimes they jazz it up.

(video by Meredith Lombard on Flickr)

One response so far

One Response to “Tundra Swan Quartet”

  1. George Bercikon 22 Mar 2013 at 2:11 am

    Kate, I arrived at Middle Creek on March 5th,right between two nasty weather systems. The vast numbers of Snow Geese had vamoosed,so there were only about 5000 left at Middle Creek. The Tundra Swans were also down proportionally. Good numbers of other waterfowl, though, including Long-tailed duck, CommonLoon, and an Osprey. And very cold & windy!

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