- Common Name
- black-necked swan
- Genus Species
- Cygnus (swan) melancoryphus (black pigment)
- As indicated by its name, this is a large white swan with a black neck. A red knob or carbuncle at the base of the upper mandible is enlarged in males at breeding season. The black-necked swan has short wings, but still is a fast flyer.
- 102 to 124 cm (40.8 to 49.6 in.)
- 4.0 to 5.4 kg (8.8 to 11.9 lbs.)
- Black-necked swans are herbivores and feed mainly on aquatic plants.
- 36 days
- Clutch Size
- 4 to 8 eggs
- Feldging Duration
- Approximately 100 days
- Sexual Maturity
- Approximately 4 years
- Life Span
- Averages 10 years, but able to live up to 30 years
- This species has an extremely large range and can be found in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Falkland Islands, and Uruguay.
- Inhabits swamps, freshwater marshes, brackish lagoons and shallow lakes
- The total population is unknown but scientists believe that there are at least 10,000 mature individuals. The population is stable and not severely fragmented.
- IUCN: Least Concern
CITES: Appendix II
USFWS: Not listed
The term "swan song" comes from the ancient Greek belief that a swan sang a song of death when its life was about to end.
Male swans are called cobs, females are pens, and the young are called cygnets.
Swans have f 24 or 25 vertebrae compared to most mammals that only have seven.
Swans have the largest eggs of any bird capable of flight.
Swan parents will carry cygnets on their back while swimming, enabling the parents to regain weight lost to the rigors of mating, egg laying, incubation, simultaneous feeding, and brooding. This practice also provides protection for the downy cygnets.
The black-necked swan is the largest South American waterfowl.
Swans are known to have a triumph ceremony. Such ceremonies are when a male attacks a rival suitor, then returns to his potential mate to perform an elaborate ceremony while posturing and calling.
Ecology and Conservation
Swans are vital in controlling aquatic plant growth.
The Black-Necked Swan’s biggest threat is the loss of wetland habitat. The young also often fall prey to predators.
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