Trumpeter Swans Spotted Nesting In Missoula
Trumpeter swans are nesting in the Missoula Valley and Five Valley Audubon Society Member Jim Brown says this is something that hasn’t happened before going back as long as people have been keeping records.
"There’s a pair of Trumpeter Swans that have decided to nest in a wetland on a private property just west of Missoula in the grass valley,” Brown said. “In the mid-1800’s there were records of Trumpeter Swans nesting in the Flathead, in the upper Blackfoot Valley, but none in the Missoula valley.”
Not only are the swans nesting, they’ve produced five cignets, but not all of the birds have survived.
"These birds were first observed in early June and they set up a nest on muskrat house," Brown said. "Several months later there's two cignets and the two adults are still in the area these birds need to be somewhere between four and six years old before they nest. So the adults will pair off at about three years of age but they don’t begin nesting until about four or five years of age."
Trumpeter swans were a valuable commodity in the 1800’s and because of their value, populations were depleted, but Brown says that the fact the birds are in the Missoula Valley could be a sign of a comeback. The Missoula Valley birds chose a good nest, as they are located on water set aside for conservation.