Trumpeter swans

Our landscape has become winter-like this past week with a couple of small snowfalls accompanied by sub-zero temperatures.  Lakes that previously had thin ice have become more consistently frozen and our winter wildlife has become more at home with the cooler weather.  Within the heart of the Twin Cities are many lakes and wildlife areas, and this morning we ventured north about seven miles to an area of lakes that feed into each other, connected by canals or waterways.  This year there is a group of about 40 trumpeter swans that are calling this urban area home.  As we walked into the park the snow enveloped us with its quiet and hush, even though a county highway wasn’t far away.  After a bit we could hear the sounds of the swans and their accompanying mallard ducks as they traversed the canal.  They seemed quite content in this homeland within the city.  The trumpeter swans are large birds having a wingspan of up to seven feet.  As we stopped and watched it was easy to lose ourselves in their honking and the sound of their wings flapping.  The ducks were flying in and out of the waterway, and on the far shore we even spotted a mink as it scurried along the rocks and the ledges then slipped silently underwater.  It was a wonderful treat to spend the time in the outdoors surrounded by the wildlife and waterfowl that have given us this opportunity to observe them so close to our homes.

10 thoughts on “Trumpeter swans

  1. Beth January 22, 2012 / 5:19 pm

    Beautiful, peaceful. Thanks for sharing.

    • lindastaatsphoto January 22, 2012 / 7:03 pm

      Thanks, Beth. There was something about this image that stood out over the other images I photographed, and “peaceful” is an adjective I associated with it too.

  2. joani January 22, 2012 / 6:22 pm

    Can’t help to reflect on what Mother nature shares with us.(sorry for the pun)
    Thanks for your gift of sharing………..

    • lindastaatsphoto January 22, 2012 / 7:04 pm

      Yes Joani, your pun is well-intended. And we must be appreciative of all that’s offered up to us. Hope the remnants of Mother Nature’s wrath on the Pacific Northwest are starting to be put back in order.

  3. Joan January 22, 2012 / 9:11 pm

    Beautiful photo Linda. You get rewarded for getting out of the house. Does this mean that your Winter Festival will happen after all? Will the ice sculptures stay frozen??

    • lindastaatsphoto January 24, 2012 / 7:12 am

      Thanks Joan – your comments mean a lot coming from an accomplished fellow-photographer! The Saint Paul Winter Carnival is ready to begin later this week. The ice sculptures are a go since we’ve had the colder temps, but the snow sculptures have been cancelled due to lack of the white-stuff. It’s a bit difficult to make an eight to nine foot tall snow sculpture when there’s only an inch or two of snow on the ground. Always a challenge when you’re counting on Mother Nature!

  4. Linda Yoo January 23, 2012 / 9:10 am

    Very cool photo- How lucky you were to be there at just the right time. Love that the swan is on the snow….
    All of our snow has melted now. It was nice while it lasted.
    Glad you get out to see everything and take such lovely pictures!

    • lindastaatsphoto January 24, 2012 / 7:15 am

      Hi Linda — glad you like the photo, and I’m glad you’ve survived your Pacific NW snowstorm. Snow in the Seattle-area presents a whole different set of challenges than snow in Minnesota. And after the snow you had to deal with the ice! I’m sure it was beautiful there; hope you were able to enjoy the winter wonderland around Green Lake.

  5. Margaret January 23, 2012 / 2:42 pm

    I can almost hear the flapping/honking scene – and yet, in the midst, that soft and silent image. Nice reminder to take a little time for quiet and centering. Thanks!

    • lindastaatsphoto January 24, 2012 / 7:17 am

      Yes, Margaret — if you’ve ever been around trumpeter swans their honking and calls are quite loud, especially when they all decide to create a chorus at one time! I think that is precisely why I chose this photograph to post; it speaks of the quiet and calm that winter allows us if we look for it.

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