Tundra Swan

(Cygnus columbianus)

Conservation Status
Tundra Swan
Photo by Ed Oliveras
  IUCN Red List

LC - Least Concern

 
  NatureServe

N5B, N5N - Secure Breeding and Nonbreeding

SNRM - Unranked Migrant

 
  Minnesota

not listed

 
           
           
 
Description
 
 

There is usually a small yellow patch (lore) on the bill below each eye. This is not always present. When present, it may not be visible when viewed at a distance.

 
     
 

Size

 
 

48 to 60in length

78 wingspan

 
     
 

Voice

 
   
     
 

Similar Species

 
 

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor) is larger. The bill is orange with a black knob at the upper base. It is a rare vagrant in eastern Minnesota.

Trumpeter Swan (Cygnus buccinator) is larger. The bill is black and has no yellow lores. It is much less common.

 
     
 
Habitat
 
 

Shallow areas of lakes and wetlands, agricultural fields

 
     
 
Biology
 
 

Migration

 
 

Late March to mid-May and November

 
     
 

Nesting

 
 

 

 
     
 

Food

 
 

 

 
     
 
Distribution
 
 

Occurrence

 
 

Common migrant

 
         
 

Maps

 
 

The Minnesota Ornithologists’ Union All Seasons Species Occurrence Map

 
         
 
Taxonomy
 
  Class Aves (birds)  
 

Order

Anseriformes (ducks, geese, swans, and relatives)  
 

Family

Anatidae (ducks, geese, and swans)  
  Subfamily Anserinae (true geese and swans)  
 

Genus

Cygnus (true swans)  
       
 

Subordinate Taxa

 
 

Bewick's Swan (Cygnus columbianus bewickii)

Whistling Swan (Cygnus columbianus columbianus)

 
       
 

Bewick's Swan (Cygnus columbianus bewickii) is sometimes treated as a separate species, Cygnus bewickii.

 
       
 

Synonyms

 
 

Olor columbianus

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glossary

Lores

Small patches of skin between a bird’s eye and bill, one below each eye.

 

 

 

 
 
Visitor Photos
 
           
 

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Dan W. Andree

 
 

Tundra/Whistling Swans taking flight...

A flock of Tundra or Whistling swans. I believe Tundra and Whistling are the same species. Anyway captured this image early in the spring of 2021 at a pond in Norman Co. Mn. I am using some 4k footage of them in a video.

  Tundra Swan  
 

Wayne Rasmussen

 
    Tundra Swan      
           
 

Swan migration at Tamarac Nat'l Wildlife Refuge - 2009

 
    Tundra Swan      
 

Ed Oliveras

 
    Tundra Swan   Tundra Swan  
           
 
MinnesotaSeasons.com Photos
 
    Tundra Swan      

 

Camera

 

     
 
Slideshows
 
  Tundra Swan
Allen Chartier
 
  Tundra Swan  
  Tundra Swan
Andy Reago & Chrissy McClarren
 
  Tundra Swan  
  Tundra Swan
JMC Nature Photos
 
  Tundra Swan  
  Tundra Swans
Craig A. Mullenbach
 
  Tundra Swans  

 

slideshow

       
 
Visitor Videos
 
       
 

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Other Videos
 
  Tundra Swan Migration pt1
exceptionals
 
   
 
About

Uploaded on Jan 29, 2007

Migration of the Tundra Swan on the upper Mississippi river late Autumn of 2006.

   
  Tundra Swans (Anatidae: Cygnus columbianus) Flying
Carl Barrentine
 
   
 
About

Uploaded on Apr 16, 2010

Migrant Tundra Swans leave the Kellys Slough NWR, North Dakota en route to their Breeding grounds at high latitudes (16 April 2010).

   
  Tundra Swans at Pickering Creek Audubon Center
Kelsey Frey
 
   
 
About

Uploaded on Dec 7, 2009

In 2002 and 2005 Pickering Creek Audubon Center (Easton, MD) restored several acres of farmland into freshwater wetland and grassland habitats for migrating waterfowl and shorebirds. Today the wetlands host black ducks, mallards, northern shovelers, green wing teals, pintails, wood ducks, american wigeons, ruddy ducks, canada geese, snow geese, tundra swans, killdeer, yellowlegs, great blue herons, many more birds, and a host of amphibians. The wetlands serve as vital wintering habitat and stopover habitat during migration. Shown are an adult and immature tundra swan preening their feathers visible from the overlook platform November 20, 2009. Canada geese are heard in the background.

   
  White Wing | The Tundra Swan Migration
John Davidson
 
   
 
About

Published on Apr 25, 2013

Each year, just at the first hint of spring thaw, massive waves of tundra swans begin a migratory trek from the Chesapeake Bay area, where they winter, to the Beaufort Sea in the Arctic, where they breed and nest. These magnificent birds aren't known to most North Americans, for their fly-past across the vast land is brief. A few days to rest and replenish at various locations in Southern Ontario and Manitoba, but no more. The imperative of an ancient biological clock calls them to keep moving north. For they have a precious few weeks to breed, nest and ready their fledglings for the 4200km return flight in the fall.

The video is part of a feild report on the tundra swan migration, posted at http://www.perfectdayfactory.com/tundra-swans/

   
  Tundra Swans, Mississauga; Mar 17, 2013 LFazio
PeregrineFalcon1918
 
   
 
About

Published on Mar 18, 2013

By the hundreds Tundra Swans, harbingers of spring, arrived in north Mississauga, Ontario by mid March, 2013. In a human made water collection culvert, beside the expressway, this primitive migration pattern continues against all human obstacles. Their eerie yodeling calls was a joy to hear; the Swans are on the way to the 'tundra' biome following the atlantic flyway that they have followed for millennia.

   

 

Camcorder

 
 
Visitor Sightings
 
           
 

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  Dan W. Andree
Spring 2021

Location: Norman Co., Mn.

A flock of Tundra or Whistling swans. I believe Tundra and Whistling are the same species. Anyway captured this image early in the spring of 2021 at a pond in Norman Co. Mn. I am using some 4k footage of them in a video.

Tundra Swan  
  Wayne Rasmussen
2009

Location: Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge

Swan migration at Tamarac Nat'l Wildlife Refuge - 2009

Tundra Swan  
  Ed Oliveras
11/25/2004

Location: Rieck’s Lake Park and Campground (Alma, Wisconsin), Alma, WI

Tundra Swan  
           
 
MinnesotaSeasons.com Sightings
 
   

 

 

Binoculars


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