• Trumpeter Swan

    Common NameTrumpeter Swan
    Scientific NameCygnus buccinator
    Type of ReportRare Species
    Date of Observation03/18/2018
    • Other Documentation of Observation
    • Other Documentation of Observation
    • Other Documentation of Observation
    Number Observed1
    Reporting Observer's NameRich Kelley
    Mailing Address17 Hog Island Rd
    Swanton, Vermont 05488
    United States
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    EmailEmail hidden; Javascript is required.
    Date Completed03/19/2018
    Names & Emails of Other Contributing Observers

    Jim Osborne initial saw the bird, joined later by Jim Mead, both were still there when I got there. On the morning of March 19th, the bird was still there and I met Clem Nilan there watching for it.

    Latitude of Observation44.970743
    Longitude of Observation-73.178582
    Place NameCharcoal Creek, along VT Route 78
    Vermont eBird Checklist URLebird.org
    Time of Day05:55 PM
    Length of Time Observed30 minutes
    Maximum Estimated Distance from Bird (in feet)750
    Minimum Estimated Distance from Bird (in feet)500
    Noteworthy Weather Conditions

    Clear, not much wind, temps in upper teens to low 20s, dusk approaching but visibility good

    Optical Equipment Used for Observation

    8x40 binos, 20-60 scope, 500mm DSLR lens

    Observer’s Previous Acquaintance With This or Similar Species

    Previously saw the one last year in Brandon. We have mute swan's in Swanton (domestically) that I see regularly.

    I certify that that attachments included with this report were captured during this observation event​​.
    Description of Habitat

    Charcoal creek runs from Lake Champlain to Maquam Bog, part of the Missisquoi Wildlife Refuge. The main channel is bordered by a large marsh area. The channel was about 2/3rds open water, with some iced in areas. Swan was seen near ice edge

    Behaviors Observed

    In with a large flock of canada geese, foraging for food along with them

    Description of Vocalizations

    Not heard

    Verbal Narrative & Description of Observation

    Jim Orborne initially directed my attention to the swan, it was visible without optics from the parking lot. After setting up scope, black bill and lores visible, along with V-shaped forehead. Range measured via Google maps, about 700 feet, depending on where one set-up on shore.

    Relative Size & Shape

    At least twice the size of the surrounding canada geese,


    V-shaped forehead visible, black bill and lores. Rust staining on head

    Feet & Bill

    Feet not visible, bill black as described above with no yellow or orange

    Upper Back

    White, humped and fairly wide

    Lower Back & Rump



    Did not see extended, white

    Breast, Belly, Flanks, Under Tail Coverts




    IMPORTANT: What similar species were eliminated when making the identification and how was this bird different?

    Mute swans and tundra swans ruled out by lack of orange/yellow on bill

    Other Notes & Comments

    I returned to the area the following morning (March 19th) and the swan was still there. Several other eBird reports indicated it remained though at least early afternoon, by the time of this submission.

    This report was written from notes taken:Immediately After

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