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The largest waterfowl species in North America, the trumpeter swan (Cygnus buccinator) is named for its distinctive, trumpeting, ‘oh-OH’ call. Both the male and female trumpeter swan are entirely white, with a black bill, face and legs, and a long, straight neck. The male trumpeter swan is slightly larger than the female. Juvenile trumpeter swans are also mostly white, but may have some darker grey or greyish-brown feathers and more greyish-pink legs, which turn yellowish-grey to black with age. On hatching, young trumpeter swans, called cygnets, are normally grey, with greyish-pink feet and a greyish-black to dull pink bill. The trumpeter swan is very similar in appearance to the tundra swan (Cygnus columbianus), and the two species can be difficult to tell apart. However, the trumpeter swan is larger, with a longer neck, and also differs slightly in the shape and profile of its bill. In addition, the tundra swan often has a yellow spot in front of the eyes, which is lacking in the trumpeter swan.




See Also

Bewick’s Swan