Swan, Black-necked


Cygnus melanocoryphus


White with black neck and white stripe behind eye. Females are slightly smaller than males.

Family

Anatidae

Order

Anseriformes

Class

Aves

Range

South America from Tierra del Fuego and the Falkland Islands north to Central Chile and Paraguay.

Habitat

Swamps, freshwater marshes, lagoons of brackish water, shallow lakes and sheltered coastal sights.

Life Expectancy

Sexual Maturity

Around the end of their second year.

Diet

Leaves, buds, steams, seeds, roots, tubers, fruits, algae. Occasionally invertebrates, amphibians, and fish.

Status

IUCN - Least Concern

Behaviors

Breed in early spring, July – August, in single pairs or loose groups. Make a nest of a large mound of vegetation either in reeds or partially floating. Lay 4 – 8 eggs that are incubated around 100 days. The male closely guards the nest and stands over it while his mate forages, but does not incubate eggs. Newly hatched cygnets are cared for by both parents – both adults will carry the young on their backs and spend more time doing so than any other swan. They are a gregarious swan, forming flocks of several thousand birds when not breeding. Males can be extremely aggressive to other birds and are among the most aggressive of all swans.

Adaptions

Since their legs are set so far back on the body, making land travel awkward, they spend a great deal of time in large bodies of water.

Special Interests

Although still rather expensive, they are becoming quite popular in captivity and many are produced each year.

Folklore

Conservation

Jacksonville Zoo History

Exhibit

Emerald Forest Aviary