Wednesday, September 17, 2008
In the neighborhood anyway Monday, I stopped at Osceola's East Lake to check up on the trumpeter swans who live there. The permanent residents, a flightless pair, are part of Iowa's contribution to restoration of the U.S. population of trumpeters, once numbering in the millions but decimated by civilization, if you can call it that. Their cygnets are released into the wild yearly to fly free, hopefully to survive power lines and predators, human and otherwise, and reproduce.
There are four cygnets this year, and as I was standing there just outside the fence minding my own business while watching theirs, the cob, accompanied by one of his offspring, decided to exit the lake, walk up the hill and observe me more closely in return --- only fair I guess.
I have a sneaking suspicion they may have been expecting treats --- something I didn't and don't offer wildlife in situations like this. But it was a treat for me to see these magnificent waterfowl up close and personal.
So here you have the approach, the examination, the departure and sailing away. These photos were shot through the mesh fence that surrounds the swans' enclosure so the angles are a little whacky sometimes.