Ask the Swan Specialist
Date: 19 July 2017
If all the birds are male, and you introduce a female, you are going to create so many problems that you may wish you never had introduced the female or any other swan.
1. There will be such an intense rivalry as to which male will pair with the female that the ensuing fights could result in serious injury or death to not only the female swan, but some or all of the male swans.
2. Many states require a breeder's license to have mating pair of Mute Swans especially since many are banning and even killing Mute Swans so that the larger Trumpeter Swans can be introduced on ponds for Trophy Waterfowl hunting purposes. You may also require a state license and the state knowing that you have Mute Swans, may issue you the license or require you to get rid of your current swans.
3. If you receive a breeder's license from the state, you will be required to pinion all cygnets (baby swans) (have one flight wing amputated by a licensed veterinarian at 1-3 weeks of age with documentation that the procedure has been conducted and any and all subsequent veterinary records).
4. Once the cygnets reach 8-10 months of age, you will need to find another safe and secure home for the cygnets as the parents will begin nesting and producing another brood. Mute Swans can produce 1-8 cygnets a year, this means that every year you will have a new brood of cygnets that you will need to find a new home. It is becoming increasingly difficult to find new homes for Mute Swan due to the intense governmental regulations required for ownership.
5. If the other birds are males, you will not be able to introduce another male as the swans will fight and possibly kill or seriously injure each other.
Should you still wish to introduce a female swan, then a dog run (1/2 in the water and 1/2 on land with a zero entrance should be used. You will need to attach the run securely so that no wind or other issue can cause the run to become submerged and the swan killed. A feeder should be placed in the run. This temporary pen will allow the new swan to acclimate itself to you, its habitat and the other swans. Should any sign of aggression/defensiveness be observed among any of the swans, then you must find the new swan a new home as this introduction is not going to work.
If after 2 weeks, there is no sign of aggression, then you can introduce the new swan onto the lake. You must still be diligent in your observations and have a rescue boat or kayak available to intervene in any scuffles. This is especially important during mating season as all males may try to mate with the female and accidently kill or drown her during the ensuing melee.
On another note, you must find a female the same approximate age as your other birds as an older male can seriously injure and even kill a younger bird during the mating process.
It is in our best opinion, that you not introduce any other swan onto the pond and the lone swan will be just fine, especially after the breeding season when all swan hormones return to normal. Then, all the swans will go about their business being pals on the pond with the normal scuffles found between siblings. The Regal Swan