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Mute Swan (Cygnus olor) , 1st Fall

Posted by Julie L. Brown, Photobirder (Indianapolis, Indiana, United States) on 17 December 2014 in Animal & Insect and Portfolio.

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©2010-2014 Julie L. Brown, All rights reserved

Cape May, New Jersey

A boardwalk trail at Cape May Point State Park allows visitors a view of the plants and wildlife found in freshwater coastal marsh habitat.

The adult Mute Swan has an orange bill and a black face. Immature birds are "Dirty gray or white. Legs gray or pinkish. Bill gray or tan, turning pinkish. Bill knob lacking or small. Lores white and feathered, turning black." The presence of this species is a cause for concern and controversy in communities along the Great Lakes and the east coast. "A native of northern and central Eurasia... introduced into North America to grace the ponds of parks and estates. Escaped individuals have established breeding populations in several areas, where their aggressive behavior threatens native waterfowl."

A proposal to eliminate Mute Swans from the state of New York is also being considered in New Jersey.

Last year (October 6-12) I traveled to southern New Jersey for "Cape May Magic" an American Birding Association workshop conducted by Mark Garland and Pat & Clay Sutton . It was a wonderful week of birding and learning about birds, although it was rainy and very windy. The storm, a nor'easter (a cyclonic storm that moves along the east coast of North America. It’s called “nor’easter” because the winds over coastal areas blow from a northeasterly direction) , lasted most of the week. As a result, the conditions were generally very challenging for bird photography. Despite the weather, I enjoyed it so much that I spent another five days there in mid-October 2014. Due to its location at the end of a peninsula bordered by Delaware Bay and the Atlantic Ocean, Cape May , New Jersey is a migrant trap and one of the top birding destinations in North America.

CHECK OUT MY WORDPRESS BLOG For species profiles, location reports, random nature notes, as well as links to my favorite photographers, nature bloggers, and conservation websites. LATEST POST: Backyard Birdwatching: Immature

Canon EOS 5D Mark II 1/1600 second F/6.3 ISO 400 600 mm

birds | juvenile | mute | swan | cape | may | point | state | park | new | jersey

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This photoblog is my nature journal and travelogue. Many of my wildlife images were made in environments impacted by humans. My goal is to feature each animal in a way that allows the viewer to sense the essence of its life in the wild. The purpose of the accompanying narratives is to enhance awareness and appreciation of our natural world, as well as to inspire everyone to protect and care for it.

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©2010-2014 Julie L. Brown
, All rights reserved

Ronnie 2¢ from Atlantic Shores, United Kingdom

I marvel at how fast these grow . . and how their 'swan' character develops.

17 Dec 2014 8:10am

@Ronnie 2¢: It is even more fun to see cygnets, which I have not. Have you seen this species at your local pond?

Focales from Entre montagnes et Bretagne, France

Great capture Julie

17 Dec 2014 8:10am

Dimitrios from ATHENS, Greece

elegance galore*

17 Dec 2014 9:01am

B. Thomas from Arlington, Texas, United States

Excellent shot. Beautiful.

17 Dec 2014 2:16pm

@B. Thomas: Thanks, Barbara. On the day this image was made I could still get 1/1600 shutter speed at an ISO of 400. Not the case later that week as the storm moved in!

michel creze from le havre, France

Good shot !

17 Dec 2014 2:18pm

franz from Baden, Austria

splendid in all its beauty !
love the fine "texture" of the water !

17 Dec 2014 6:30pm

@franz: Thank you, Franz. Texture provided courtesy of US Atlantic coastal winds!

Tataze from Bourgogne, France

very nice swan

17 Dec 2014 7:22pm

omid from mashhad, Iran

very nice shot!
such beautiful frame, focus, colors, lighting & textures!
L O V E L Y !

17 Dec 2014 8:56pm

Maxine from Christchurch, New Zealand

nicely done, not disturbed by you at all

17 Dec 2014 11:15pm

DarkElf from Perth, Australia


18 Dec 2014 3:07am

Ronnie 2¢ from Atlantic Shores, United Kingdom

[ If this be a Mute Swan then, yes, I have them locally in London and even a few Whooper Swans which take seed from my hand ]

18 Dec 2014 6:03am

@Ronnie 2¢: Ah, yes I remembered that you were the 'swan whisperer' :)

L'Angevine from Angers, France


18 Dec 2014 7:35am

jean pierre from paris, France

jolie prise!! amitiés

18 Dec 2014 7:52pm

Anita from West Nottingham, Pennsylvania, United States


18 Dec 2014 10:14pm

Shaahin Bahremand from Tehran, Iran

beauty shot

19 Dec 2014 7:01am