Ask the Swan Specialist
Date: 1 October 2016
Juliet, 19 year old white mute, has given us about 50 cygnets. The only time she has ever left her lake is the year after her cob died. She went to our other lake, picked out a cob, and took him home to her lake. This spring she had 3 cygnets with mate Lucky. The cygnets are bigger than Juliet now but she is a small swan. Last week she left everyone behind and went to a big lake. When I pulled her out to return her I noticed weight loss, took her to the vet for fecal and bloodwork, a bacterial infection (runny bill and chest congestion) were found. I put her on Baytril for 7 days and kept her at my house. When I returned her to her cygnets she was happy to get in her lake but left again the next day to another lake. Forgot to mention she has been eating Mazuri WM throughout her illness. I feed her 3 times a day on the new lake (one without any other swans) and she seems content. Why would she leave her cygnets and cob?
The cygnets are about 4 months old. We usually transfer the cygnets to another lake in February because the parents are wanting to start nesting season and don't want the cygnets around. Any ideas? Could she be dying? Do you think she wants her cygnets taken to another lake so she doesn't have to share her lake with them anymore? Thank you. Betty