Swan

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Swans
Mute Swans (Cygnus olor)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Anseriformes
Family: Anatidae
Subfamily: Anserinae
Genus: Cygnus
Bechstein, 1803
Synonyms

Cygnancer Kretzoi, 1957

A swan (Cygnini) is a kind of water bird, from the genera Cygnus and Coscoroba. They are in the subfamily Anserinae, in the family Anatidae, which also includes geese and ducks.

Many swans live in colder places, such as northern Europe, Asia and North America. They live on water. They swim on top of the water and eat plants off the bottom of ponds, lakes, or oceans. They also eat insects and other small animals. Swans can also fly.

A baby swan is called a Cygnet. The name of the constellation Cygnus is from the Latin word for swan.

Description[change | change source]

The swans are some of the largest flying birds. They are large in size and have large feet and long necks. The males are usually bigger and heavier than females. The Mute Swan, Trumpeter Swan, and Whooper Swan are the largest swans. They can be over 1.5m (60 inches) long. They can weigh over 15kg (33 pounds). Their wingspans (this means the length of both wings) can be almost 3m (10 ft).

Most swans are white. These swan are found in the Northern Hemisphere. This means they are found in Europe, Asia and North America. However, the Black Swan is black with a red beak. It lives in Australia. The Black Necked Swan is white but it has a black neck. It lives in South America. They also have a small area of skin between the eyes and beak that has no feathers. This area can be different colors, such as yellow (for example, on a Bewick's Swan) or orange (for example, on a Mute Swan).

The Coscoroba Swan is different to the other swans. Some scientists think it is more like a duck or a goose. It is the smaller than the other swans. This swan lives in South America.


Taxonomy[change | change source]

  • Genus Cygnus
    • Black Swan (Cygnus atratus)
      • New Zealand Swan (Cygnus atratus sumnerensis)
    • Trumpeter Swan (Cygnus buccinator)
    • Bewick's Swan (Cygnus bewickii)
    • Whistling Swan (Cygnus columbianus)
    • Whooper Swan (Cygnus cygnus)
    • Black-necked Swan (Cygnus melancoryphus)
    • Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
  • Genus Coscoroba