Posts tagged “Cygnus columbianus

Flight of a Tundra Swan

Tundra Swan flight - 2014 © Christopher Martin

There are large gatherings of swans on the prairie around Frank Lake  right now.  This area is on the migration path and I really enjoy getting to see these birds when they pass through.  This Tundra Swan (Cygnus columbianus) was sharing a small flat of ice apart from a small group.  I watched them, and they watched me for a few minutes.

A curious pair - 2014 © Christopher Martin

Then they took their running launch to get into the sky.  Heading into a steady headwind, they seemed to gain altitude very quickly once they were airborne.

Running to take flight - 2014 © Christopher Martin

Into the air - 2014 © Christopher Martin

Tundra Swan flight - 2014 © Christopher Martin

Tundra Swans in the Rockies

Lac des Arcs is a stopover for swans returning to the north.  This year they have just started arriving.

I identified Tundra and Trumpeter swans.  For most of the morning I was watching Tundra swans flying from one open pond in the ice to another.

It was a beautiful day in the Rockies with blue skies and a little fresh snow on the ground.  I went to the western shore in the hopes that I would find some fliers that I could shoot into the sun as well as in shadow – the best of both worlds.

It was fun and I was pretty happy with the images.

I’m looking forward to heading out there again soon.

They are fantastic fliers, very fast and graceful.  Their takeoff takes a few long strides while they get the wings going.