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Trumpeter Swan Cygnets Hatch at the Maryland Zoo

Posted By : The Animal Facts Editorial Team

Date: May 23, 2021 1:00 am

Trumpeter Swan Cygnets Maryland Zoo

A trumpeter swan cygnet in the nest with its parent

Photo Credit: Maryland Zoo

The Maryland Zoo have announced the hatching of a pair of trumpeter swan cygnets. This is the sixth clutch of hatchlings for the parents. They hatched after a 30 day incubation by their parents at the zoo's Farmyard habitat.

“This is the sixth clutch laid by the trumpeter swan pair here at the Zoo. Scuttle and Buttercup play a very important role in the conservation of their species,” said Jen Kottyan, avian collection and conservation manager.

“Many of their previous chicks were reintroduced to the wild as part of the Trumpeter Swan Restoration Program in Iowa. This year the chicks will be sent to the Buttonwood Park Zoo in Massachusetts to prepare for life in the wild as part of a release program next spring in Oregon.”

Trumpeter Swan Cygnets Maryland Zoo

A pair of trumpeter swan cygnets have been born at the Maryland Zoo

Photo Credit: Maryland Zoo

At the zoo the swans will be raised by their parents. Staff are monitoring them as they grow in to juvenile swans and begin to swim, forage and feed. We’ll be very hands off to keep them as wild as possible,” continued Kottyan. “We want to give them the best chance at survival in the wild once they are released.”

Trupmeter swans are among the largest waterfowl in North America and are the world's largest swan. They weigh as much as 30lbs (13.6kg).

In the early 1900s the trumpeter swan was nearly driven to extinction by hunting for their skin, feathers, meat and eggs. The Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918 gave protection to trumpeter swans ad helped to curb hunting though their decline continued till 1932 when as few as 70 were believed to remain.

During 1935 the US Government established Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) in Montana’s Centennial Valley to protect the remaining trumpeters.

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Trumpeter swans entirely disappeared from Oregon during the 1800s but since 2009 the Trumpeter Swan Society, in partnership with the Oregon Restoration Project, has worked to reestablish trumpeter swan populations in Oregon.

The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore are participating in the Oregon release project for the first time. In previous years their juvenile trumpeter swans have been released in Iowa.

Trumpeter Swan Cygnets Maryland Zoo

A trumpeter swan cygnet with its parent at the Maryland Zoo

Photo Credit: Maryland Zoo

“It is a great conservation program that we are thrilled to be a part of,” said Kirby Fowler, president and CEO of The Maryland Zoo.

“Thanks to conservation partners like the Trumpeter Swan Society, the trumpeter swan population is growing each year. While our adults would not be suitable to live in the wild, it is great to be able to watch them rear their cygnets and contribute to the trumpeter swan population in the US.”

Trumpeter Swan Cygnets Maryland Zoo

The trumpeter swan cygnets with their parents at the Maryland Zoo

Photo Credit: Maryland Zoo

Learn more about the Maryland Zoo on their website – Maryland Zoo

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