Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Dakota Flyway: Swans

While riding with Farmer Fred on a highway in GriggsDakota we noticed migrating swans. 
We don't see swans around here in the summertime and we had to stop and watch for a few minutes. 
We soon realized that there were snow geese and blue geese resting on this slough, as well. 
We observed that the swans ate elegantly from beneath the surface of the water by dipping their heads down as they bent their elegant necks. For the geese, it was bottoms up.
The geese were not as shy as the swans who moved away from us quickly, though they did not fly far. 
There is a hunting shack across the water on the right in the above photo. These birds have clearly never been hunted here. They were unafraid. 
From what I have read, snow geese will fly to Mexico for the winter. Swans migrate to the southern United States.
Canada geese stop where they find open water. They work together and can keep an area of water from freezing during a temporary cold snap.
Our cold snap is not temporary. It will last for months. All water birds are now leaving the freezing ponds of GriggsDakota.

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