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Swan family 2

Swan family 2
Photo Information
Copyright: Nicki Mora (greychick) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 53 W: 0 N: 103] (625)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2008-12-06
Categories: Birds
Exposure: f/9.0, 1/250 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2008-12-23 3:25
Viewed: 4940
Points: 4
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Well I just want to wish all trek nature buddies a very happy and blessed Christmas. I hope to have more time to be on here next year. Some friends have pointed out that it has been ages since my last photo and indeed it has. so here is my contribution for tonight.

Some really interesting notes on Black Swans.

The main concentrations of the birds are now to be found on coastal lakes and lagoons around the South Island and in the Wairarapa, Hawkes Bay in the North Island, as well as inland lakes in the Waikato and Rotorua. About 5000 birds are legally shot each year out of a national population estimated at 60,000.

Nesting habits depend upon the locality and food supply but may nest colonially. The black swan is very aggressive when defending its territory and nest from intruders, including other swans. Only about one in five of New Zealand’s black swans nests in any year, and no more than a third of the birds present at a breeding area attempt to nest. The birds heap available plant material, usually rushes, in piles and line with down. Usually, five or six greenish white eggs are laid. Incubation, by both parents, takes about five weeks. Cygnets are led to the water within 24 hours of hatching. At territorial sites they are reared in family broods but in colonies four or more broods may be reared collectively, attended by only one pair of adults.

For most of their life prior to breeding, black swans seem to leave the place where they were born for marine and estuarine habitats. Lake Ellesmere birds disperse for coastal Otago and Southland, Lake Wairarapa birds cross Cook’s Strait to the Marlborough Sounds and Farewell Spit and Waikato birds make for the harbours of Northland. Occasionally we see black swans here at Ohiwa which undoubtedly come from the Rotorua Lakes breeding population. However, when breeding age is attained, they usually return to their birth place and remain there for the rest of their long lives, some 20 years.

Diet is mainly leaves of submerged aquatic plants such as Ruppia, Egeria and Zostera but they will also graze on pasture grass and clovers, much to the ire of farmers. Their voice is a high pitched bugling in flight or among flocks on water, a loud hiss in defence of nest or young and a shrill whistle. The wings whistle in flight.

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Critiques [Translate]

nice family, TFS Ori

  • Great 
  • joey Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1739 W: 224 N: 6872] (24909)
  • [2008-12-25 15:15]

Hi Nicki,
a great shot of this family of Black Swans.
Very good sharpness.
Great composition.
Excellent DOF.

Well done,

Merry Christmas!

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