Fight of the Swans

To: "" <>
Subject: Fight of the Swans
From: Geoffrey Dabb <>
Date: Tue, 14 May 2019 00:25:22 +0000

Yesterday morning nineish, Kelly Swamp, fog lifting, dull light, 4 swans flew in, much honking.  They didn’t settle but swam around restlessly, separating into 2 groups of 2.  Below picture shows one ‘pair’ swimming rapidly close together, necks arched.  Suddenly fighting broke out within each ‘pair’, very aggressive, mutual pecking and neck-entwining, much spray.  They took flight after 20 seconds (photo-timed) with one member of each ‘pair’ chasing the other.


HANZAB says ‘FIGHTING:  Rare: occurs in confrontation, if rival fails to move away: beats with fully open wings at rival …’   ‘Neck-fighting’, involving prolonged wrestling with entwined necks, seems to be well-known among Mute Swans (much YouTube available) but not with Black Swans. Yesterday’s confrontations seemed more the school-yard variety (neck-fighting, wing-striking, biting included) rather than following any particular rule book.


A flock of seagulls flying over a body of water

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