Ask the Swan Specialist

Re: Baby swans disappearing
By:The Regal Swan
Date: 13 May 2017
In Response To: Baby swans disappearing (Jan)

Hi Jan:

Unfortunately, this is nature. There are many reasons for the missing cygnets. One would be predators, i.e., egrets, herons, turtles, large fish, owls, hawks, raccoons, coyotes, alligators, foxes, minks, otters, or domestic predators such as dogs and cats. Since we do not know your location, we cannot be more specific of which predators may be in your area. At a young age and size, the cygnets are part of the food chain. Once the cygnets get larger, approximately 5-8 weeks of age or older, the list of predators substantially decreases.

Second, the cygnets might have been subjected to an illness or stress such as consistent changes in the weather, i.e., warm then extreme cold temperatures, flooding rain, strong winds, etc.

Without a necropsy, (animal autopsy), there is no way of knowing exactly what is causing the cygnets to die, but if they are disappearing, then more than likely there are predators in or near the pond. A shallow pond will allow turtles and large fish or even land animals/birds to easily access the cygnets. In the case of predators, there is not much you can do except identify the responsible animal/bird and try to remove them. However, most animals and birds are protected and would be very difficult to remove them legally because they are acting normally in participating in the food chain.

Mute Swans are not protected in many states. State and federal wildlife officials will not help as they will try to remove the swans and even kill them due to the concerted effort throughout the U.S. to kill the Mute Swans and give their habitats to the larger Trumpeter Swans which will be used for future Trophy Waterfowl Hunting. The Regal Swan

Messages In This Thread

Baby swans disappearing -- Jan -- 13 May 2017
Re: Baby swans disappearing -- The Regal Swan -- 13 May 2017