Ask the Swan Specialist

Marking a swan with dye/paint
Date: 11 May 2017

I live in Michigan of a small lake. We have several mute swans that nest here each year. Mute swans are not protected in Michigan - they are not native and officially are an "invasive species" - and the state the state DNR is attempting to eradicate them throughout the state.

Two weeks ago (when unfortunately there were 50 swans on the lake - most, most unusual - never happened before - sometimes 20 or so will pass through but by May we'll on have one or two nesting pairs) our local Home Owners Association and has contacted the USDA (a Federal Agency with the power to eradicate them) who will be coming soon to kill most of them on our lake.

One male swan (we call him Mr. Macho) has been coming to our lake for 15 years with a mate and have babies. He and his mate always come to our pontoon boat - he recognizes it - when we are out on the lake, throughout the summer to get bread (which we feed them). He literally eats out of our hand.

Two years ago his mate was died (unknown cause) while raising three cygnets. Mr. Macho protected the babies the rest of the year. Last year, and again this year, he came back alone. I want to save him (DNR will not kill him if they can identify him). I'm going to spray some sort of dye (probably red or green dye or paint) on his neck so he can be saved. I realize that what I spray will have a difficult time "sticking" to his feathers. Do you have any suggestions as to what I can use to save him? Any help is MOST appreciated!

Messages In This Thread

Marking a swan with dye/paint -- Dan -- 11 May 2017
Re: Marking a swan with dye/paint -- The Regal Swan -- 11 May 2017