Mingling with Mute Swans at Council Point Park.

Last Sunday I had big plans … not fun plans, but I had dawdled long enough in compiling the tax paperwork, so it was time to hunker down and get ‘er done.  So, I would walk to the Park, do some laps, feed my furry and feathered friends, then head home.  I wasn’t too enthused with the prospect to be honest. 

Then I looked outside. 

It was a bright and beautiful day – who wants to be inside sifting through paperwork?  In a heartbeat, I tabled that tax task to the next weekend and decided to drive, make a quick pit stop at Council Point Park, then head one mile east to Dingell Park on the Detroit River. 

Though I had sworn off taking any more pictures until I had exhausted the 2021 photos, apparently I had a momentary lapse of judgment as I sped out the door with the camera in hand.  Hours later I would return with enough waterfowl shots for several posts.

Mr. and Mrs. Mute Swan graced the Park with their presence.

At Council Point Park, I really didn’t plan on taking any photos, but, as I walked around the perimeter path, suddenly there was a flash of white between the bare bushes and trees.  That sighting could mean only one thing:  a Mute Swan visit.  In nearly nine years of walking at the Park, I’ve only seen Mute Swans about a half-dozen times.  So, I hurried over, hooking my bag onto my arm, shucking my mittens, exchanging them for my fingerless gloves.

My hunch was correct.  There was a pair of Mute Swans gliding around the alcove area, the same spot which was so popular with the Mallards due to the dead shad.  I had not seen any shad, dead or alive, the last time I was here, but I suspected some bodies might have lingered as a fishy smell permeated the air.

I stood back admiring the swans from afar before taking photos.  It was a male (“Cob”) and female (“Pen”) and they alternated between preening, diving for aquatic plants and admiring one another.  I often see photos of swans beak to beak, their graceful necks forming a heart – these two were close together, but I captured no such dramatic shots.

It was then I noticed one of the swans had something on its neck.  I first thought it was some muck it had dredged up from the Creek bed, but it was moving.  I turned the camera on and quickly zoomed in.  It was a band of some sort with numbers on it.  Hmm – strange they would band a bird around its neck and not its feet?  I pondered about the swan’s “necklace” and watched it slipping up and down this beautiful creature’s neck effortlessly and seemingly not constricting it.

Yes, I was mesmerized by these Mute Swans.

Filled with bravado, yet determined to thwart any unwelcome advances by a prickly Cob, I inched a little closer to the ledge and began taking photos of the pair.  But, after only a few shots, evidently the clicking of the shutter alerted the Cob, who paddled closer to the cement ledge, so I backed up posthaste.  I managed to get a few shots in as you see below.

The male (“Cob”) quickly paddled over to see if I was a threat to him or the Missus.
Looks like I passed muster and he returned to the female/mate (“Pen”).
You likely noticed the collar/tag on this Pen in the header image. It easily slid up/down its graceful neck.
Though to me the poor Pen looks mighty uncomfortable and a bit constricted in this shot.
Swans are so graceful and beautiful, even when simply sipping water or gliding in the Creek.
I wonder if this Pen likes what she sees as she gazes at her reflection?

Together or apart, the Mute Swans made an impression on me as I watched them on that cold February morning. Although I’ve seen no more shad floating about, there are other fish that populate the Creek waters and clearly that was the magnet for the Mute Swans’ appearance. Interestingly, the Cob was content to watch the Pen go diving several times for a fish and then wrangle it as you will see in the photos below. I couldn’t tell if she shared her fish with her mate.

Mute Swans breed anytime from March through June. Every year I am hopeful to find cygnets tucked away on their mom’s feathers on her back going for a free “boat ride” – maybe this year?

I wondered if I could find out the history of this collared Mute Swan, so after going through my photos on Saturday, I researched a little on my own.  I found an article online by David R. Luukkonen, Ph.D., a Wildlife Research Biologist with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.  The DNR had collared and tagged many Mute Swans and he requested any sightings of swans with their I.D. info and location be forwarded to him as they wished to track the swans’ whereabouts throughout Michigan.  I submitted the criteria requested and three photos.  I hope I can learn the origin of where this swan was tagged and released; if so, I’ll update this post.

P.S. – Wondering about my wariness to approach the swans?

Because you only have to be chased by a Mute Swan once to remember how scary it was, as you read above, I stood a respectable distance away while admiring and taking pictures of the pair.  Here’s the backstory, for those of you who were not around in 2018 when I had two encounters with Mute Swans within a few weeks’ time. 

The first encounter happened after taking photos of a pair of Mute Swans on a picturesque day at Council Point Park.  Portions of the pathway were icy and the landscape snowy.  As I happily clicked away, I heard one of the swans making a snorting noise and figured its nostrils were stuffed up from diving into the frigid water.  Well, that was an incorrect assumption.  While Googling later that day, I learned the swan was irritated with me and made these noises.  But why?  I was not doing anything to anger it.  Just admiring the pair’s grace and beauty and taking photos.

In fact I was still standing there when suddenly the huge Mute Swan huffed and puffed its way up the Creek bank and proceeded to charge at me.  Yikes!  On a Winter’s day when you had to be mindful of where you stepped, (and I’m talking about icy patches, not goose poop), my heart was pounding as I began walking backward, thinking I could go to the nearby park bench and climb up onto it to foil any attempt for this big brute to attack me.  Mute Swans are known for their unprovoked attacks on humans.  The swan plodded toward me, those powerful legs and webbed feet quickly shortening the distance between us.  I was glad I had my wits about me and some quick thinking on my part as I tossed some peanuts I had in a Ziploc bag toward it, thinking it might eat them, allowing me a hasty getaway.  It worked!  I hightailed it to the other end of the Park and to the car, lest it should decide to come after me.   It’s good to respect wildlife, though I certainly wasn’t hurting either of the swans.  If you want to see the post about our interaction, here is the link and just scroll down near the end.

The other incident, just a few weeks later, at the same venue, did not involve a menacing Mute Swan, but instead a Mute Swan that was intently pushing its way through the thick ice on the Ecorse Creek.  I stopped in my tracks on the perimeter path, marveling at how incredulous it was that this swan had forged a path through the ice and, having reached the Creek banks, it climbed up the sides and began preening all the icy chunks from its feathers.  Its neck was soaking wet and it looked exhausted for that had been quite a trip.  As it stood there, I knew it was tired, likely not even mindful of my presence.  I remained frozen in place, worried that once the swan stopped preening, it might come after me, but I was surprised that it turned around and walked to the Creek bank and into the water to continues its ice-cutting journey once again.  I was happy I had the camera handy for this sequence of events.  That post may be found here. 

About Linda Schaub

This is my first blog and I enjoy writing each and every post immensely. I started a walking regimen in 2011 and decided to create a blog as a means of memorializing the people, places and things I see on my daily walks. I have always enjoyed people watching, and so my blog is peppered with folks I meet, or reflections of characters I have known through the years. Often something piques my interest, or evokes a pleasant memory from my memory bank, so this becomes a “slice o’ life” blog post that day. I respect and appreciate nature and my interaction with Mother Nature’s gifts is also a common theme. Sometimes the most-ordinary items become fodder for points to ponder over and touch upon. My career has been in the legal field and I have been a legal secretary for four decades, primarily working in downtown Detroit, and now working from my home. I graduated from Wayne State University with a degree in print journalism in 1978, though I’ve never worked in that field. I like to think this blog is the writer in me finally emerging!! Walking and writing have met and shaken hands and the creative juices are flowing once again in Walkin’, Writin’, Wit & Whimsy – hope you think so too. - Linda Schaub
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73 Responses to Mingling with Mute Swans at Council Point Park.

  1. These mute swans are beautiful and you were lucky to have found them. The neck band looks a tad uncomfortable: wonder how long it has to wear it. Interesting you looked it up and found more info about it! You’re very good about that stuff. Wonder what further info. You’ll learn about this bird.
    Now I know what a Cob and Pen are. Thanks for enlightening us readers with that
    Good to know about mute swans and sudden attacks on humans. Never thought they would since they look graceful and calm.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Hi Esther – I think they are beautiful too and I thought the band looks constricting in some pictures. In another picture in this post, I wanted to show how the band slides down the neck as it is at the base of the neck. Initially, I thought it was a takeout coffee cup “sleeve” that it had gotten on its neck as people toss trash into the Creek. I have found some more info and will do a short post tonight to publish tomorrow. It was banded in 2014 so that’s a long time and these swans can live up to ten years in the wild. The male/pen has a large knob above the bill and it is a larger bird, though you can’t tell from these pics that it’s larger. Yes, swans will attack you, especially if they have their babies nearby, or if they/mate feel threatened. They are like geese who will similarly attack a person that goes anywhere near the goslings, or even the nest. Swans are huge! I thought they looked big in the water, but the day that swan chased me I had never seen a swan out of the water before – I was shocked. I’ll have more swan pics next week from the other venue.

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      • That’s news for me. I only saw swans in water so had no idea they were as big as geese. It would be a scary experience! When we feed the ducks nearby, the geese’s gaze freak us out and forget it when they start flapping wings.
        I thought the same about the band being a coffee sleeve. They must be used to it now. Wonder what the experience was like for the swan and bander in the beginning.
        Learned some new terms: Cob and Pen and mute swan. Thanks Linda! Expanding my knowledge of nature.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Linda Schaub says:

        Yes, in the water they are big, but on land with those powerful legs – yes, stay out of the way Esther! The geese get fractious with their goslings. We had a male walker who refused to move for them when they and their goslings were on the path. It’s not a big deal to just step onto the grass and give them wide berth, but this one guy refused. It’s only for about a month or so, then the goslings are bigger. Glad to give you some new terms Esther. You can tell the male from the bulbous area at the base of its bill – the female does not have such a pronounced “bump” and the the males are bigger overall with a wider wingspan. I don’t see them flying too much, but did last week and when they fly, their wings make a humming noise – you can’t miss the sound.

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  2. Pam Lazos says:

    Sounds like Close Encounters of the Swan Kind, Linda. Wonder why only one was tagged. I thought Sean’s mates for life. You’d think they’d not be tagged. And such a big tag! Doesn’t that impede his diving ability?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Hi Pam – I have some info on the swan that I found out about how they are tracking Mute Swans and why and will do a short post for tomorrow because it was interesting to learn about this research and banding program – this swan’s collar has been in place since 2014. I even entered the info into a federal database as well. I thought the collar looked constricting too, but the collar slides quite easily up and down its neck and that’s when I saw it moving as it dove down into the Creek. Here in Michigan, Mute Swans are actually considered invasive as they eat up to four pounds of aquatic plants a day, thus destroying crustaceans, small fish, etc. that live within the plants. A UK blogger who photographs birds said their Mute Swans have rings on their legs. In previous posts, Andy has shown other UK shorebirds with multiple colored rings as tags, always on the one leg and those rings represent various criteria.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Anne says:

    I too was wondering why the tag had to be so large and I look forward to your update, should you receive any further information about it. This has been a pleasure to read and to browse through your photographs.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Glad you enjoyed the post Anne – I am going to do an update, a separate post for tomorrow as I have some info on this swan and the collaring program. I also submitted my info and pictures to a federal database which tracks various birds. I enjoyed this experience – my first tagged bird.

      Like

  4. Ari says:

    So beautiful. They are stunning to watch as they glide, but I never want to get too close. Where we go to visit the ducks and swans, they are lovely but they do come out of the water and recently we have several very large swans coming towards us. Even throwing some food nearby didn’t deter a few of the larger ones from coming forward. So we scarpered! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Yes Ari – they are so graceful, but mean And I was lucky to escape that first time, though I was merely taking photos and they were in the water, not anywhere near me, so I sure didn’t deserve that treatment! They don’t look as big in the water as they do on land – a force to be reckoned with. A UK blogger told me she used to feed the swans and could buy swan food for them. I have learned some info on this swan and will do a quick post for tomorrow.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. downriverdem1 says:

    Here’s what I found. The tag is for identification. it is for Ph.D. research with Michigan State University. The goal of this research is to understand the movement and survival of mute swans in Michigan and is being conducted in partnership with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and USDA-APHIS Wildlife Services. The outcomes of this research will inform management strategies for mute swans in Michigan and across the United States.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Thank you Cathy – since I wrote this post on Saturday evening, I contacted the person I mentioned in the post, but have not heard back, so I Googled around some more and found the info you have told me, so I am going to do a quick post to update on what I found. Thank you for sending this info and tonight I also entered the swan’s tag I.D. and three photos in the federal database which tracks various birds. What a lucky find for me.

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  6. They are beautiful and graceful. You got some very nice shots of them (without any injury or attack!).

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Oh my, that band looks so uncomfortable on that poor swan. 😦 I guess they put a band on the neck because the legs are almost always under water and out of sight. The swans are so beautiful and graceful. Your camera seemed to capture a very tender, loving pair. It will be interesting to learn where the tagged one has been since being tagged. And I’m glad neither one of them felt threatened by you!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      I thought the band looked uncomfortable too Barbara, though when the swan dips its head into the water to dive, the band moves up and down. Fellow blogger Andy has posted pictures of shore birds with multiple colored rings on their legs to identify them – this was a first for me seeing a banded bird. I have learned some more info about this swan concerning its band, so I’ll do a quick update post for tomorrow. I was surprised it has been banded for eight years already. The male seemed very attentive unless it just wanted some of the fish. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  8. peggy says:

    Beautiful post. These are such lovely creatures. I think there must be a better way to band these birds. I am sure this has to bother the swan. Looks like you had an enjoyable day on your journey.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Thanks Peggy – glad you liked it. I agree with you – swans are beautiful. You have your Trumpeters and we have the Mute Swans and Tundra Swans. We have a lot of the Mute Swans and they are actually considered an invasive species here. I thought the band looked constricting in some of the pictures, but I did see it go up and down its neck as it dove into the water. It was a great day and after these two swans, I went down to the River and got some more photos of waterfowl – everything but herons that seemed to be missing that day.

      Liked by 1 person

      • peggy says:

        Sounds like you have so many great places to walk in your area. We usually have to drive an hour to get to the rivers and lakes around here to capture pictures of the water birds. The way gas prices are going that may stop many of the rides we use to love to take.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Linda Schaub says:

        You’re right Peggy – I am really fortunate to live so close to the water. I could spend a day, just going to various shoreline parks along the Detroit River, then a few miles down the road is Lake Erie and several shoreline parks around there. It is exciting to see those swans here at the Ecorse Creek which flows down to the Detroit River, (just a mile away) and it is not very wide at all. I imagine with this big gas hike that people that bought boats and big RVs during the first year of the pandemic might be putting them in storage for a while.

        Liked by 1 person

      • peggy says:

        Yes, you have great places to visit for photos. This gas thing will keep all of us low-income people home for quite some time.

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      • Linda Schaub says:

        Yes, that is sadly so – I hope that the idea of removing the gas tax will help out. Too bad it wasn’t in the Winter when the weather kept us hunkered down inside a lot more.

        Liked by 1 person

      • peggy says:

        If it wasn’t gas holding us down – it would be something else I guess.

        Liked by 1 person

  9. I am not sure about the use of neck rings, we have several ringed Mute Swans here on the Solent all ringed on legs an easily spotted and readable, great post Linda 👍

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Glad you liked the post Andy – I am going to do a short post tomorrow about the banding which I found interesting. I remember seeing the colorful rings on some of your shorebirds. This is the first time I’ve ever seen a tagged/collared bird and I put its info into a federal database so they can track its whereabouts. Over here, Mute Swans are considered invasive.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I have had some helpful info on leg rings as to a birds history but also many “no replies” to reports. So fingers crossed for your quest.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Linda Schaub says:

        I think in my case Andy, the people who were doing doctorate work probably completed it by now, but the site where they keep more stats on each bird said they document everything – I had to give not only the address but geographical points for their mapping purposes. It was very interesting!

        Liked by 1 person

  10. trumstravels says:

    Interesting about the band, glad you found out why and could forward information to them but such a strange way to band a bird! I hear you about the swan chasing you, Canada Geese are like that, they are a nasty bird (but I still love them) I had never heard of Cob and Pen before, very interesting! And yes when its a beautiful day, we need to be out and about !

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Glad you enjoyed the post and I’ll have a short update post tomorrow on a little info I learned about M011. It was my first banded bird sighting and I was a little incredulous that they’d have the tag on its neck and it was rather huge, but even though it looked tight in some photos, it was easily sliding up and down its neck with each dive. On that morning, the swan came up the Creek banks and headed toward me in the blink of an eye and I had to back up quickly. We had a Canada Goose knock a golfer to the ground a few years ago, after the guy was on the golf course and he merely walked by the goose nest and the goose went berserk, flying up into him multiple times. His golfing buddy captured the incident on his cellphone.

      Liked by 1 person

      • trumstravels says:

        Well I’m glad the band is not bothering the swan, it just looks so big! Wow that goose was ornery knocking him to the ground. I walked by a grouse and her babies and she chased me! Lol I think I could have taken her lol but I just ran😄

        Liked by 1 person

      • Linda Schaub says:

        I think you could outrun the grouse, but those swans and geese have powerful legs and big feet. 🙂 Yes, that band looks really big to me too. That video made the round here as I believe it happened in Michigan. Once to fly up and against this guy was bad enough, but that goose did it a second time – persistent!

        Liked by 1 person

  11. Joni says:

    I’m wondering if the tag is loose, because it may gain weight, although possibly not in the neck area. Some of the pairs I saw recently in the rive were enormous, much bigger than when I saw them there last year, and they must have had babies as there were 9 instead of 4.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Joni – it seemed to slide easily up/down its neck, yet in some pictures, it looked constricting. It was my first banded bird I’ve seen and I have more info on it, so will do a short post for tomorrow. I was surprised to learn the band has been on since 2014. I hope I see swan babies this Spring – I’ve been going to the River every Spring looking for them. At least you saw the swans all grown up!

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Are mute swans rare in your area? We had lots in Stony Brook.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. ruthsoaper says:

    I’m so glad you took advantage of the nice weather. This was such a treat.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Glad you liked the post Ruth and I was so glad I went out that day as I saw these two and then down at the River were even more swans and other birds on the ice floes. Yes, it worked out well as I stayed home yesterday due to the high winds. We had 51 mph winds at Detroit Metro at 10:00 a.m. – how about you?

      Liked by 1 person

      • ruthsoaper says:

        We had high winds as well, but it was so warm we did spend several hours at the farm getting some work done and my daughter brought her dog out to play with Ranger. The temperature had dropped 10 degrees by 4:00 and the wind made it feel even colder so it was time to go home.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Linda Schaub says:

        Strange weather – I think around here they said the temps dropped 17 degrees in late afternoon when the winds finally died down. It will be a while until you’re ready for a dip, but you know Michigan weather – up and down like a rollercoaster.

        Liked by 1 person

  14. Rebecca says:

    A good choice to get out and enjoy nature. What a treat to find these beautiful birds!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Yes, I am so glad I went out Rebecca. Yesterday it was very high winds (50-60 mph gusts), so I stayed in and worked on the tax stuff. It was a treat – my first banded bird and I have since found out some info and will do a follow-up post tomorrow.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Rebecca says:

        I look forward to reading it. Just when I think spring is here, winter comes back with a vengeance. Many of our daffodils and bushes are blooming and trees budding. I’m sure the blooms will be killed by the cold weather coming in this weekend.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Linda Schaub says:

        I hate hearing that Rebecca. Winter weather has been so erratic this year all over the U.S. We have Snow Drops but that is it. We had cold weather kill off many Magnolia blossoms last year, but something odd – they bloomed three times and my neighbor’s tree had buds in December.

        Liked by 1 person

  15. Eilene Lyon says:

    So how do you tell the difference between cob and pen?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Hi Eilene – I probably should have said as I have some new followers. Last year I took photos of a Mute Swan pair “fishing” and I described the difference. If you look at the male/cob it has a huge black knob on the base of its bill. It is quite pronounced and gets larger during the breeding season. That is the main difference, but the males are larger with a bigger wingspread as well.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Prior... says:

    The closing incidents would make me keep a respectable distance as well!!

    And hope you do get to see “cygnets tucked away on their mom’s feathers on her back going for a free “boat ride”
    Hahaha

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Yes, that male Mute Swan was all fired up that day Yvette and had I not thought of throwing the peanuts his way, he’d have mowed me down for sure. They have some powerful feet and are quite large when standing. Every year I go to the River looking for those cygnets peeking out of their mom’s feathers on a “free boat ride” – very sweet to see. Maybe this year?

      Liked by 1 person

  17. A very interesting twist to your trip to the park. So cool that you sent photos in for the research program. I remember your other posts about being chased. I was chased by a swan when I was young, they are MEAN! I hope those two swans stick around so you can see their cygnets this year. I know you always want to see them.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Yes, it was scary with the one and I remember us discussing swans chasing us as youngsters. I was at a park with my folks and I think my father and I were near the water and had to make a run for it all of a sudden. I’m going to try to get to Dingell Park more often after May and see if I can see them. I was at Dingell Park right after this sighting at Council Point Park and probably saw about 25-30 Mute Swans (not all together though) that day.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Zazzy says:

    I had never heard of mute swans before! This was all very interesting, especially in light of your follow up.

    I have to admit that I was moved to tears the first time I saw swans in Yellowstone Lake. I did a lot of crying in Yellowstone. Seeing a moose up close in the wild is awe inspiring. And bison. I could practically reached out my car window and pet them, but I am not a crazy tourist. But the swans! Beautiful and so majestic! And, here you get to laugh at me. I had never thought of swans being wild animals. I mean, of course they are, but I’d never seen any except in zoos and parks where they were kind of a part of the background.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      I would love to go to Yellowstone Zazzy. I am on Twitter mostly for the news and weather, but I do follow a local photographer who vacationed in Yellowstone recently and he had pictures of the bison – very awesome to see those pictures. He took a lot of landscape photos which were beautiful too plus there was snow which made the photos even nicer. I’m no fan of snow – either are you, but seeing it in the photos was breathtaking.

      If you saw a pair of swans like these two, you’d admire their beauty first, before you’d ever think they’d come out of the water and hunt you down. They are known to attack humans on land, but also in the water – people in boats who come too close to them are apt to get a swan try to attack them and the boat.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Zazzy says:

        I highly recommend Yellowstone. I lived in Cody for a couple years, about an hour from the east entrance, so we went exploring every weekend we could. Back then, oh my word, in 1993, it was okay to take your dog with you on the walking paths. So Fred and I set out on opening weekend. They cleared the snow from the roads but it was over twice the height of my little car off the road. Fred never met snow he didn’t like so he had the time of his life climbing all over it. We had the park virtually to ourselves and saw things like steam coming out of the earth in what looked like an empty field – with geothermal warning signs. We stopped at one of the convenience stores after exploring all day, both of us exhausted. I let Fred out on leash and he was taking a long pee when I glanced over my shoulder and saw a bison standing there not 10 feet from us. I had an instant image of Fred going after the mammoth thing but he looked up, saw the bison and headed instantly back to the car. Smart doggie!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Linda Schaub says:

        That would be incredible and yes Fred was a smart doggie. There was a video that made the rounds last year about a news reporter making a report and the live shot caught him noticing a bison too close for comfort. It was funny to see.

        Liked by 1 person

  19. bekitschig says:

    There’s always a reason to put the tax return off but why go and hang out with these scarry things?

    Liked by 1 person

  20. I can’t believe you saw 30 swans in one place. I have never seen more than two at one time. They are such a beautiful bird and the band looks awful.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Yes, only two here at this Park, but lots of swans, at least 25-30, at Dingell Park at the Detroit River, just a mile away from Council Point Park. They gather down there with the ducks, geese and herons … and eagles in February and March. They go there as there is open water in a little alcove, so the ice is not solid, so these birds sit on and fish from the ice floes.

      Like

  21. Dave says:

    Thanks for the postscript, Linda; you read my mind wondering why you’re so wary around swans. Your backstory was all I needed for an answer. Swans are so graceful, it’s hard to believe they can also be so menacing. Like any animal, I suppose they’ll do whatever it takes to protect their family from “predators”. Watch yourself if those goslings show up!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      You’re welcome Dave. Like you, I thought of swans as being graceful creatures, gliding around the water and people standing on the shore admiring their beauty. Then that big swan came after me and I was just standing there innocently taking pictures. It was very scary and I did panic due to the snow and ice. In nice weather, I would have just turned around and hightailed it, but the path was icy in parts. Thank goodness for the peanuts! The waterfowl are extra fractious once their offspring arrive and I give them wide berth for them and their babies. The ducks are a tamer lot and just walk or swim away from humans.

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