The swan's location diary is located below the map.
Click on the map for a larger view.
19, 2004: Pomfret, Maryland near La Plata. Like swan #33888,
this swan left Virginia and is now located in Maryland. With the
onset of freezing temperatures many tidal creeks and river areas
are frozen. This, combined with snow cover on the agricultural
fields may be causing the swans to move further to find open
water and available food sources.
29, 2003 - January 2, 2004: Potomac River, Virginia.
The swan has moved up to the Potomac River and has been using
the area between Quantico and Dahlgren. Several hundred to a
thousand or more swans generally use this area, although there
have been fewer swans in this area this year.
21-25, 2003: Rappahannock River. The swan moved around
the river during the past week from between Fort AP Hill to
Millswamp Creek. She appears to be using several different field
and river areas for feeding and roosting.
- 21, 2003: Middle Peninsula near Occupacia, Virginia.
The swan has returned to Virginia and is using the same field
complexes on the Middle Peninsula that it used last year. This
portion of the Rappahannock River between Tappahannock and Port
Royal has large agricultural fields and rich creeks in which many
swans often feed.
December 5 -
December 9, 2003: WI Muskego- Big Muskego Lake near
Milwaukee. Instead of using the marshes of the Great Lakes,
the swan is staging on a large lake just southwest of Milwaukee,
Wisconsin. In her fall migration in 2002 she had done similarly,
choosing to stopover on one of Wisconsin’s large natural lakes.
2003: Lake Michigan near Milwaukee. With over
three-fourths of her migration completed, the swan has made her
way to the Great Lakes. The Great Lakes will be her last stopover
area before returning the Atlantic Coast.
November 6 -
November 21, 2003: Upper Mississippi River near the
Iowa/Wisconsin/Minnesota Border. The swan has left the
prairies behind and now is staging on the Upper Mississippi River.
She is replenishing energy reserves in the large agriculture
fields along the Mississippi River floodplain and resting on
marshes and large reservoirs of the upper Mississippi River.
October 13 -
November 2, 2003: Prairie Pothole Region of North Dakota.
After traveling another 220 miles southeast, the swan has crossed
the Canadian border into the northwest corner of North Dakota near
Fortuna. From here she will slowly move across the numerous
wetlands and vast agricultural fields that characterize the
Prairie Pothole Region.
October 4 –
October 8, 2003: Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. Shifting its
migration from its southerly course, the swan has moved 150 mile
to the southeast as it begins its short hops across the Prairie
2003: Rutland, Manitoba along the Southeast
Manitoba/Alberta Border. Continuing directly south, the swan
made a big jump across the boreal forest, and traveled 1,100 miles
into the Prairie Pothole Region. This is the second of our swans
that has bypassed the boreal forest lakes during their fall
migration. She left the nesting grounds a week later than the
previous year and may be trying to make up time.
2003: Coronation Gulf east of Kuglutuk, Nunavut. The
swan and her cygnets have started their migration back to
Virginia. The first leg was a 200-mile flight directly south of
their nesting grounds to Coronation Gulf, located just above the
artic circle. This is the last of our radio-collared swans to
leave the nesting grounds.
June 3 –
September 22, 2003: Prince Albert Sound, Victoria Island,
Nunavut, Canada. The swan has spent the summer on Victoria
Island. She should have nested and raised her brood to flight
stage by now.
May 30, 2003:
Prince Albert Sound, Victoria Island, Nunavut, Canada. She
has completed the last 600-mile leg of her migration back to the
arctic. Like our other swans, she has returned to nest at the same
location as in the previous year (2002). We have also had other
swans on Victoria Island; #33892 was found in this area before her
radio quit functioning.
May 13, 2003
– May 26, 2003: Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. The
swan has moved about 250 miles north to Great Slave Lake. This
glaciated lake is also a major staging area for swans returning to
their tundra nesting grounds. Great Slave lake is the largest lake
in the Northwest Territories and one of the deepest in North
America. This area also marks the transition zone between the
boreal forest to the south and the tundra habitat to the north.
May 5, 2003
– May 9, 2003: Northwest Saskatchewan – Northeast Alberta.
She has made a big jump traveling nearly 600 miles northwest to
the south end of Lake Athabasca. This has been a common staging
area for a number of our radio-equipped swans. This bird stopped
here last year on May 21, 2002. Like swan #888, the timing of her
migration appears to be about a week or more ahead of her
migration from last year.
May 1, 2003:
Southeast Saskatchewan near Algrove. The swan has moved
another 250 miles northwest and crossed into the Canadian
prairies. Still in the Prairie Pothole Region, the marshes of this
area provide a smorgasbord of aquatic vegetation and invertebrate
2003 – April 27, 2003: Devil’s Lake, North Dakota. A
large marsh complex situated in the heart of the “duck factory”,
Devil’s Lake is important for both nesting and staging waterfowl.
A number of state and federal wildlife refuges and management
areas are located in this vicinity, an indication of the
importance of this habitat to waterfowl.
2003 – April 11, 2003: Minnesota – South Dakota – North
Dakota Border. She is continuing to move west into the prairie
pothole area. Many of our swans stop here along the Red River
Valley in the fall to feed in the large agricultural fields. In
the spring, swans stop in these nutrient rich wetlands to obtain
energy for migration and protein and nutrient reserves for egg
laying and nesting.
2003: Saginaw Bay, Lake Huron. She has made a short hop
to the west and stopped near Saginaw Bay, Michigan. Other
radio-equipped swans have also stopped here on their northward
migration. In her migration last year, however, this swan stopped
on the eastern side of Lake Huron and did not appear to make a
stop on the western side where she is currently located.
2003 – March 25, 2003: Lake Erie. She was located on
the south side of Lake Erie along the NY-PA border and then
crossed over to the north side along the Ontario, Canada
shoreline. The marshes and shallow water areas along the Great
Lake are important to many species of waterfowl. Swans and diving
ducks such as Canvasback and Scaup take advantage of the aquatic
vegetation and invertebrate foods that can be found in these
2003: Near Erie, Pennsylvania and Lake Erie. This swan
has moved 300 miles northwest to the south shore of Lake Erie, and
is located near the New York/Pennsylvania border. One of our other
radio-equipped swans is located just southwest of here near
Pymatuning, PA, and another swan is located across Lake Erie from
here at Long Point, Ontario. From here, this swan should shift its
migration track westward to the Prairie Pothole Region.
2003: Pope’s Creek - Northern Neck of Virginia. The
swan was captured last year on this same creek. This year fewer
swans wintered on Popes Creek; however, this area seems to be a
staging area before swans start heading north.
2003 – March 9, 2003: Middle Peninsula-Northern Neck of
Virginia. The swan has returned to the Rappahannock River,
near Occupacia Creek where she has spent much of this winter.
2003: Cobb Island, Maryland. Our swan made a brief trip
across the Potomac River to Maryland. There are small scatter
flocks of tundra swans along Maryland’s Potomac River.
2002 – February 19, 2003: Middle Peninsula-Northern Neck of
Virginia. The swan is spending most of its time on the
Rappahannock River between Tappahannock and Port Royal. However,
she is also spending some time between Popes Creek, were she was
captured, and Nomini Creek on the Northern Neck. Our radio
telemetry work has shown that swans wintering in this part
Virginia often move back and forth between the Potomac and
Rappahannock River drainages. They use the large open-water rivers
to roost, and feed in the agricultural fields on the Northern Neck
and Middle Peninsula.
2002: Potomac Beach, Virginia. The swan traveled
another 600 miles and has returned to Virginia. She should be near
the end of her 3,000-mile long fall migration. She is located on
Rosier Creek, a tributary of the Potomac River near Colonial
Beach. This area generally winters around 60 swans each year.
November 2 -
December 5, 2002: Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The swan has
moved 70 miles directly west to Wind Lake, southwest of Milwaukee
and about 20 miles west of Lake Michigan. This swan (similar to
bird #33894) is also taking a more southerly migration track than
she took on her migration north.
October 17 -
October 29, 2002: South Central North Dakota near Jamestown.
She has traveled 50 miles west into the heart of the Prairie
Pothole Region. She appears to be making a slow gradual migration
through this part of the country probably taking time to build up
energy reserves prior to making the final leg of her migration.