Trumpeter Swan

Cygnus buccinator




Ducks, Geese and Swans (Anatidae)

Code 4


Code 6



Egg Color:

Creamy white, nest stained

Number of Eggs:

2 - 13

Incubation Days:

32 - 27

Egg Incubator:


Nest Location:

On top of muskrat or beaver lodges.

Nest Material:

Low mound of plant material on floating platform.





Trumpeter Swan: Large swan, completely white but with head and neck often stained rust-brown from contact with ferrous minerals in wetland soils. Bill, legs, and feet are black. Sexes are similar. Juvenile is gray-brown with orange-pink saddle on black bill.

Range and Habitat

Trumpeter Swan: Nearly extirpated from overharvest and widespread destruction and degradation of wetlands. Breeds in Alaska, British Columbia, Northwest Territories, Alberta to southern Ontario, and south to Oregon, Nevada, Nebraska, and the Great Lakes region. Spends winters in southeastern Alaska, western British Columbia, and northwestern U.S. Rare to casual from northern California, the midwest, and the Great Lakes. Preferred habitats include marshes, lakes, and rivers with dense vegetation.

Breeding and Nesting

Trumpeter Swan: Two to thirteen creamy white eggs are laid in a huge nest on a vegetation-covered island or beaver lodge. Incubation ranges from 32 to 37 days and is carried out by the female.

Foraging and Feeding

Trumpeter Swan: Diet consists of aquatic plants, insects, and snails. Long neck and powerful bill allows it to reach down and pull up submersed roots and stems that other waterbirds cannot. Each adult eats up to 20 pounds of food per day.


Trumpeter Swan: Call is a bugling "ko-hoh", similar to a French horn.

Similar Species

Trumpeter Swan: Tundra Swan is smaller and has yellow spot on bill.

Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X