Ask the Swan Specialist

Re: Housing for swans
By:The Regal Swan
Date: 9 August 2014
In Response To: Housing for swans (Elizabeth)

Hi Elizabeth:

There are only two reasons to build a house for swans: Predators and inclement weather. If your swans have been very productive and survived the winters, we would strongly suggest NOT to build anything on the island.

Swans are particular about their habitats and do not like change. They also do not like to be housed in a shelter with a roof such as a three-walled shelter. If you are going to build a shelter with a door, you will need to insure that no predators can get inside the building, you will need to protect from pests such as ants and rats as you will need to keep food and water inside at night, which means constant daily cleaning of poop, straw and food. Additionally, the swans will need to be trained to use the new shelter which is going to be trying as if they do not want to go in, unless you physically capture them via boat, otherwise the shelter is useless.

Because swans do not like change, you may actually chase them from the island. The island is the safest place for them not only from predators, but also inclement weather as they will use the island to shield themselves from hard rain and wind. So, we would leave them alone as they seem happy in their surroundings.

Now, having said this, should you experience some really extreme cold temperatures during the winter, you may need to bring them indoors in a garage or shed, (away from the water and the island). This will still allow them shelter, but they will not associate this building with their water/island habitat. We would also recommend the use of a de-icer during the winter to keep the water way open for feeding, bathing and drinking and to prevent predators from accessing the swans on the ice. Also, a de-icer will help prevent drowning and easier access to the island. We hop that this information is of benefit. The Regal Swan

Messages In This Thread

Housing for swans -- Elizabeth -- 8 August 2014
Re: Housing for swans -- The Regal Swan -- 9 August 2014