Would you like to meet a very beautiful kind of swan? If you go on a trip, you’re sure to find it in the end: it’s the Whooper Swan, and we could say it’s the real swan in the cygnus genus.
What is its range?
It receives the scientific name of cygnus cygnus and is a species of anseriform bird of the anatidae family, typical of Europe and Asia. Its range is in the islands north of the Atlantic Ocean, Europe and Asia.
In autumn and winter, it usually moves to warmer places, such as the northern Mediterranean Sea, the Caspian Sea and the Pacific coast of China.
A fantastic white bird
It is a large bird, which can reach up to 1.65 meters. The average weight of a male is between 10.8 -12 kg. In the case of the female, this is a little smaller and her average weight is 8.1 kg. It does not have sexual dimorphism in its plumage, since the male and female have white feathers all over their bodies.
A characteristic he shares with the rest of his family members is the yellow color of its beak. The base of this at the top is yellow and turns black as it approaches the tip. The bottom part is completely black.
What else is known about this species?
Reproduction of this species begins in the northern hemisphere spring. According to recent studies, it is a species that could be monogamous, so they spend their entire lives with the same partner. Usually, couples form more than a year before they reach sexual maturity.
Nests are built as a mound on dry coasts or in shallow waters, using reeds, aquatic plants and moss. After mating, the female will lay four to six eggs, which she will incubate for one month, although it can last up to forty days.
Shortly after hatching, the chicks begin to follow their mother. However, they will not learn to fly until they are 75-100 days old. They will take time to leave the nest, as they take a couple of months to reach maturity.
This species almost disappeared in Finland in 1950. However, thanks to various protection campaigns carried out by ecologists, the current population has grown to between 5000 and 7000 pairs.
Their diet consists mainly of aquatic plants. To obtain them, first of all, nothing on them by moving the legs very quickly, which helps to make the roots less and less attached to the soil. Then he puts his head in and grabs them with his strong beak. Contrary to what has happened with the Bewick’s swan, it has not been seen to have adapted to eating grains or maize as an alternative food source.