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post #1 of (permalink) Old 10-25-2012, 05:26 PM Thread Starter
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Default The Swans Are Back!

About a dozen years ago Trumpeter Swans started to winter at Cheam Lake Wetlands. At first there were only a few but at times there are hundreds! Welcome back Swans, 50 of them just flew over my house to spend the night at Cheam Lake.

Lovely!
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 10-25-2012, 07:09 PM
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I drove through westham island today and there were 1000's. some form of white swan looking bird anyways.. and about 20 people on the side of the road taking pics.

I've been on the island abunch in the past 2 months and first time seeing them.
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 10-25-2012, 08:20 PM
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wonder if they are any good to eat [)]
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 10-25-2012, 08:23 PM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by smac

I drove through westham island today and there were 1000's. some form of white swan looking bird anyways.. and about 20 people on the side of the road taking pics.

I've been on the island abunch in the past 2 months and first time seeing them.
perhaps snow geese?
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 10-25-2012, 09:12 PM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by alpalmer

Quote:
quote:Originally posted by smac

I drove through westham island today and there were 1000's. some form of white swan looking bird anyways.. and about 20 people on the side of the road taking pics.

I've been on the island abunch in the past 2 months and first time seeing them.
perhaps snow geese?
Most likely:
http://www.reifelbirdsanctuary.com/snow.html

It's pretty neat.

A pic from 2009:
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 10-25-2012, 09:13 PM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by alpalmer

Quote:
quote:Originally posted by smac

I drove through westham island today and there were 1000's. some form of white swan looking bird anyways.. and about 20 people on the side of the road taking pics.

I've been on the island abunch in the past 2 months and first time seeing them.
perhaps snow geese?
Yep, if there were thousands they were not swans, most likely snow geese. There are nearly 100,000 snow geese that winter here in the skagit valley where I live. There are also several thousand trumpeter and whistler swans but you only see them in small flocks.

Whoever asked about the swans being good to eat. They certainly would but it would be a shame to shoot them. Their numbers are way low and it is illegal to hunt them. I eat lots of waterfowl including a dozen or so snow geese every year though.

That photo above is certainly snow geese.

This is a picture of some swans that I took while hunting geese last year.
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 10-25-2012, 10:55 PM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by Steventy

Quote:
quote:Originally posted by alpalmer

Quote:
quote:Originally posted by smac

I drove through westham island today and there were 1000's. some form of white swan looking bird anyways.. and about 20 people on the side of the road taking pics.

I've been on the island abunch in the past 2 months and first time seeing them.
perhaps snow geese?
Most likely:
http://www.reifelbirdsanctuary.com/snow.html

It's pretty neat.A pic from 2009:
Uhmmm I'm not sure you would say that if you lived in West Richmond and specifically on the dike. Nobody can sleep anymore out there during the winter unless you wear earplugs and knock yourself out with a couple of Benzos and a good stiff drink LOL

The Snowgoose population and migration patterns have changed alot lately and large flocks are taking up residence in Richmond school grounds. And let me tell you it gets damn noisy when it starts to bounce off the walls of the highrises.

FB could be correct. The neck is certainly longer on the Swan and it's stance in the water would be noticeably different. See if you can get a picture Flowing-Brook.
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 10-25-2012, 11:04 PM
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who could tell snow goose from turkey at festival dinner? []
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 10-26-2012, 12:26 AM
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I hear the taste is something between Bald Eagle and Spotted Owl...






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post #10 of (permalink) Old 10-26-2012, 08:00 AM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by Aqua Terra

wonder if they are any good to eat [)]
Some people think so! Snow goose chili
http://www.deltawaterfowl.org/huntin.../024-goose.php
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post #11 of (permalink) Old 10-26-2012, 08:48 AM
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The trumpeter swans will be on Westham Island very soon but right now it is snow geese in the fields. I watched them while picking up my groceries yesterday, with a myriad of birdwatchers who had gathered there too.

Richmond, or Lulu Island as it once was, was a big part of the Pacific Flyway until all the development in the last 50 years. I'm very glad to hear the geese are still able to find places to forage over winter, even if they are an inconvenience to some.

A couple of interesting notes about telling the two birds apart: trumpeter swans are the largest bird native to N. America, bigger than bald eagles. Snow geese are considerably smaller, and have black-tipped wings. 8)

I was so floored when I saw the trumpeters last year, I could never have imagined seeing flocks of swans, especially in those sizes!
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post #12 of (permalink) Old 10-28-2012, 07:40 PM Thread Starter
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We saw about 300 Trumpeter Swans today landing at Cheam Lake, my camera couldn't take them all in .
http://youtu.be/TZf2RrXq_yM

*edit for faster link
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post #13 of (permalink) Old 10-30-2012, 04:05 PM
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Wow, that video is gorgeous. 8) I love the sounds they make. I didn't venture far onto Westham today, only saw two swans at the far end of a field that bordered the road, but there were about 25 sandhill cranes in a field just past the swans. I've never seen them outside the sanctuary. Bring on the swans! 8)
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post #14 of (permalink) Old 10-30-2012, 05:49 PM
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Time to pay Cheam wetlands a visit!
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post #15 of (permalink) Old 10-30-2012, 06:39 PM
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Wow! Amazing video. Any idea how long they'll hang around there for?
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