The Breeding Season Approaches

As the days grow longer, snow and ice begin to melt and Trumpeter Swans head from their wintering grounds to their breeding sites. Young pairs, usually three to four years old, spend their first year together scouting for unoccupied habitat where they can breed in future years. This is the most likely explanation for the pair of Trumpeter Swans that dropped in on Little Jackson Hole earlier this month. They decided to check out our rearing pond, where we place a pair of swans each year as part of our captive breeding program. While this property is probably too busy for wild birds, it’s a testament to the success of the Swan Partnership’s approach to Trumpeter Swan conservation. This pair is most likely the result of the Wyoming Wetlands Society’s Upper Green River restoration project. As this population has grown, birds are expanding out beyond the Green River and into the Hoback River Basin. We are looking to duplicate our Wyoming success in Idaho and Montana. The next few years will be very interesting.