Click on the small pictures to view the full-size photos
Photos by: Nancy Sand
Jim Lawrence, John V, Diana C with her Guests Mary and Ray
Lorna T, Carl W
Carl W, Lorna T, Nancy S, John V
Taken by Nancy on Feb 15th
ULLRS VISIT SWAN PARK
22 was the planned day for ULLRs to hopefully see Jim Lawrence feeding
2,000 trumpeter swans at Swan Park in Monticello. However, Mother
Nature’s recent warm days caused the swans to choose feeding in area
bare fields over Jim’s corn at Swan Park. If you haven’t already
guessed – there were no (zero, zilch, none) swans feeding on February
22 at Swan Park that sunny day. We did, however, see a few swans
flying along the river, and we saw lots of geese and ducks that come
for a free meal. We also saw two eagles high in a tree across the
Mississippi River hoping to see a struggling duck they might snatch for
a tasty meal. All ducks were healthy, and the eagles soon flew
away in search of something else.
With no swans to feed, Jim
spoke to us and other observers about the history of his late wife and
him feeding trumpeter swans and about trumpeter swans and their
habits. Trumpeter swans are large birds. When they stretch
their necks, they can stand about 5 feet tall. Because of their
wide wing span, they sometimes misjudge distance between trees or power
lines causing injuries and even death.
Trumpeter swans are
natural grazers, so our recent snow melt provided lots of open ground
for the swans to feed in area fields which is what they
prefer. So, if any ULLRs would like to see swan
feeding at Swan Park next year, go there when area fields are snow
covered. The Monticello Chamber of Commerce can generally provide
insight as to when there might be lots of swans to observe at Swan Park.
Lawrence and other conservationists regularly share information, and
their efforts have contributed greatly to preserving and increasing the
number of trumpeter swans in our area.
These photos include
pictures from our February 22 ULLR visit and pictures from February 15
when trip host Nancy S went to Swan Park for a preview. On a
cloudy day with snow on the ground in the area on that visit, Nancy saw
lots of trumpeter swans choose to feed on Jim’s corn at Swan Park.