Thursday, 18 October 2007
Tuesday 2 October 2007 - Mute Swans
The Bridgewater Canal, just across the road, has, this year, two families of Mute Swans whose territories overlap where we access the towpath. One is a family of two parents and one youngster, always seen together; the other family has four cygnets, one of which is often in sight of the others but some way away, and one of the parents is rarely seen. They are quiet birds, gently mewing when offered bread. Appropriately named ‘mute’ compared with the quacking Mallards and the bad tempered hissing Canada Geese. And they generally just paddle around, munching grass at the side of the canal. But one day last week I witnessed two of the parents who seemed to have spotted a small child with bread from about half a mile away. Side by side, with their legs running and with laboured but majestically flapping wings as they took off on their short journey, they occupied the whole width of the canal. A most impressive sight.