Ask the Swan Specialist

Re: Swan aggression
By:The Regal Swan
Date: 23 February 2016
In Response To: Swan aggression (Judy)

Hi Judy:

What you have is two male swans who are now becoming of age to mate and the testosterone levels are spiking. We do not call this aggressiveness, but rather defensive as they are protecting their nesting areas.

Female swans would be less defensive than the males, not vice versa. Males will be better (larger) to protect themselves from predators, not always, but usually.

Finally, because you do have two teenagers that will build a nest and sit on the nest until their hormone levels stabilize, you will need to provide them with a nesting area away from people and predators.

You will need a pen (1/2 on water and 1/2 on land with a zero entrance) enclosed top to bottom so that no predators can access the swans from digging under or climbing over into the pen. The pen should have nesting material (straw) placed on the land portion so that the boys can build the nest. Male swans are the ones that build the nest and the need to be allowed to do this. A feeder or other such system should be placed in the feeder (accessible to clean and replace 1/2 poultry layer pellet and 1/2 cracked corn) as needed.

You will want to be able to clean and replace the food, so the feeder needs to be in or near the water portion of the pen and opposite the nest for minimal intervention and disturbing of the swans.

If you cannot capture the swans and place them in a pen, then you need to contact a wildlife rehabilitation center/rehabber that can help you capture the swans and maybe, even house them for you until the nesting time is complete. If you could find a barn/storage area/shed that might be able to be use for nesting, that would also work, but you would need to clean and muck out the straw on a daily basis which could be rather laborious.

Finally, if none of this works, you could contact Bob Knox at Knox Swan and Dog (847) 875-3947. He may be able to trade you two females for the males. The Regal Swan

Messages In This Thread

Swan aggression -- Judy -- 23 February 2016
Re: Swan aggression -- The Regal Swan -- 23 February 2016