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Animal Detail ViewՄանրամասն` նրանց մասին

28.02.2012

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)


Scientific classification

Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata

Subphylum: Vertebrata

Class: Aves

Order: Anseriformes

Family: Anatidae

Genus: Anserinae

Species: Cygnus olor

 

Description

Based on the height of 144 to 158 cm the mute swan belongs to the large birds. The wingspan obtains a size of 2 to 2.5 meters. In appearance the two sexes display no differences besides the fact that the male is in general larger in comparison to the female. The dazzling white plumage covers the up to 12 kilo heavy swan. Both sexes have an orange bill and additional a black border plus a black knob at the base of the bill. Typically for the mute swan is their gracefully S shaped neck. The white color is sometimes disturbed in form of a brown or orange color at the neck and near the bill.

 

Range and Habits

The breeding areas of the mute swans extend from the British Isles over North Central Europe to North Central Asia. For the winter quarters the mute swans fly to North Africa, the Near East and the Northwest of India and Korea. The successfully introduction in North America, where they become a widespread species, offers an area for a permanent residence.

In the wild, in parks or on country possessions in their local range, the mute swan is the most common species. In winter they relocate to marine waters especially in well-sheltered bays, open marshes as well as lakes.

Habitat range of this species includes Armenia.

Behavior

Mute swans don’t migrate in big groups, just in winter they cluster that is about 100 individuals in open salt water. During the floatage, the mute swans pointing their bill downward while holding their neck in a graceful curve in opposite to swans that keep their body more erect.

Diet

Mainly the diet of the mute swan is made of aquatic vegetation and a little serving of aquatic insects, fish and frogs. Instead of diving, this swan species dump their head just as the long neck below the water’s surface. Because of different soundings it exist no direct fight about food with other animals like ducks or waterfowl that share the same habitat. The mute swans allocate parts of plants for other birds. While the swans are feeding the orts float to the surface and are easily available for the others. The only natural enemies are similar swan species with the same habits.

Reproduction

Mute swans don’t search for eternal love because of that they are not paired for life. Researches figured out that some live polygamous with up to four different partners. Separation from one partner in order to have a relationship with someone else is quite normal. In breeding established pairs are more successful than volatile couples and at least for the breeding season they form pairs.

Nesting in a colony is rare occurrence for mute swans. The breeding season starts in March or early April after the exactly nest location is found. Building a new nest or using an already constructed mound, like a muskrat house, is depending on the swan pairs. Aquatic vegetation form the basics of the large nest in addition the swans use feathers and down to make it complete. Preferred the breeding place is situated in swampy places near a pond or lake above the normal water level. The clutch size is about 5 to 7 eggs; the maximum number of the pale grey to pale blue-green eggs is 12. After the incubation period of at least 35 to 38 days the little brownish gray chicks hatch and stay just one day in the nest. The first-hatched cygnet is often taken by the more to the water while the female incubates the remaining eggs. The flight capacity starts after 60 days.



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