Ask the Swan Specialist
Date: 21 June 2016
Are you sure that the one swan is a Trumpeter and that it is a male?
The reasons that we ask these two questions are:
1. Usually, two species of wildlife do not ( because in some instances they can't due to anatomical reasons) interbreed.
2. Young juvenile Mute Swan beaks are black in color until they are approximately one year of age. So, this may be a young juvenile Mute Swan, not a Trumpeter Swan.
3. Both of these swans may actually be females as swans of the same gender will mate and nest. Male swan pairs will obviously not produce eggs. Female swan pairs will nest and produce eggs, but obviously non-fertile.
4. Are you sure there is not or has never been a Mute Swan in the immediate area prior to seeing the Trumpeter Swan (if it is a Trumpeter)? The female swan could have mated and something happened to the male, yet she is now nesting.
Female swans will lay eggs and sit on the eggs until she knows that they are non-viable. Even if the eggs are infertile, the female will sit for a period of time on the nest.
So, you can see there are many explanations for this situation. The only way to determine what is occurring is to wait and see if the eggs actually hatch and then, see what the cygnets look like at 6 months of age. Please keep us updated, take photos of the cygnets in approximately 5-6 months of age and send them to us. The Regal Swan