The Mute Swan's threat display consist of raising the secondary feathers of the wing, presumably in order to make the bird look as large and menacing as possible. People that only want to own swans for ornamental purposes, may choose to purchase a pair of the same sex, two males or two females, thus their will be much less aggressive behavior.
While swans may be aggressive to other
larger birds such as geese, they often do not mind smaller waterfowl
such as ducks, and will often tolerate
them nesting only a few feet form their own nest. However swans have
been reported to attack smaller species that are white in color during
the breeding season, therefore birds such as white calls should not be
kept with them. If you are interested in purchasing swans to keep geese off and lake or pond, please keep the following things in mind. Swans will be most aggressive once they have had some time to settle in and begin to claim a territory to defend. Pairs may not begin to chase geese until mating season begins (late February) Older pairs generally will be more aggressive than younger pairs. Younger pairs may not chase geese until they have a interest in breeding which can be at 2-4 years of age.
Fencing while usually not a necessity will be of help if there are areas close to your pond or lake that you do not want the birds to wander into, such as a busy highway, or a neighbors yard.
Only one pair of these birds can be kept per pond, unless they are on a very large body of water with room for their large territories. Offspring are usually only tolerated until the next breeding season. If the young are not removed by the following spring the parents will try to chase them off or may even kill them.Mutes are also not compatible with other swan species, and if kept in close proximity to other swans they should not be able to see or hear them.
If you decide to keep a male / female pair of swans on a large body of water, please make sure to have plans as to how you will catch and pinion the babies. There are now large feral populations of Mute swans in many states, and these non native birds are destroying the habitat of native species. This has caused some states to band ownership of these beautiful birds.Parents will drive their young away at the beginning of the next breeding season if they are not pinioned they will fly away and add to this problem. Here at Mallard Lane Farms we will often buy the offspring of pairs of swans that we have sold. If you have young swans you would like to sell please email us at [email protected]