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Tundra or Trumpeter Swan Near Oscoda? – You Decide

We were treated to an interesting treat today, which is much appreciated. Amy from Oscoda spotted a swan paddling along the shoreline. The swan was dodging the ice along the beach along Lake Huron. She sent us these pictures and asked to confirm if they were of a Tundra Swan. Tundra swan sightings are fairly common along Saginaw Bay during migration, but this is January.

Swan near Oscoda
Swan near Oscoda by Amy.

After consulting some of our reference books, we started to have doubts about it being a Tundra. Once identifying factor is a bit of yellow or orange at the base of the beak. These shots showed an all-black beak. We started to favor this majestic big bird as a Trumpeter swan, which is slightly bigger and has an all-black beak.

Swan near Oscoda

Then we noted something else we didn’t consider. Tundra swans have a slightly U-shaped beak-line between the eye and the beak base, which this ice swimming swan seems to have. In the end, we are not too sure. So we are conducting a little informal poll. Tundra or Trumpeter? Leave your vote in the comments below.

Trumpeter, Mute or Tundra Identification

Swan Identification - Mute vs Trumpeter vs Tundra

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Michael Hardy

Mike Hardy is the owner of Thumbwind Publications LLC. It started in 2009 as a fun-loving site covering Michigan's Upper Thumb. Since then, he has authored a vast range of content and established a loyal base of 60,000 visitors per month.

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What do you think?