[midvalleybirds] Trumpeter Swan flock still at Suver Junction (Polk Co.) but maybe dwindling and maybe hybrid?

clearwater at peak.org clearwater at peak.org
Fri Mar 6 18:27:19 PST 2020

Today around 2 pm there were just 17 (or maybe 18) swans in the field at Suver Junction (intersection of Hwy 99W and Airlie-Suver Rd. in southern Polk County, look for the flashing yellow light). 

There were two groups foraging about 100 yards apart from each other in the usual field. In the first group I counted 10 TRUMPETER SWANS (including 6 first-winter birds) and one TUNDRA SWAN. 

The second, smaller group was mainly Tundra Swans but there was also one adult Trumpeter associating closely with an adult Tundra Swan, and a strange-looking first-winter bird. By general proportions I would have called it a Trumpeter but the facial characteristics (eye set well back from the dark skin around the bill) pointed to Tundra. Also less uniformly dark than the young Trumpeters in the other group. 

I think Jim Scott might have a photo of this same odd-looking youngster, from a batch that he shared with me a week or two ago. 

Still no Rufous Hummingbirds at our place so these late-staying Trumpeters might be waiting to pick up hitchhikers! (In reference to the old myth of hummingbirds migrating on the backs of swans or geese). 

Joel Geier 
Camp Adair area north of Corvallis 

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