Although many swans are found in more northerly ranges, the smallest species resides in South America! The Black Necked Swan is marked by its incredible coloration, and is a truly lovely and unique bird.
Black Necked Swan Facts and Information
Although Black Necked Swans are usually docile and tolerant, they will usually become highly territorial in breeding season.
In the wild, they usually live in fresh water but Black Necked Swans will tolerate semi-salt marshes as well. Generally, they feed on insects, fish spawn, and vegetation.
Some keepers choose to feed them vegetarian only diets.
In captivity, they may be fed occasionally on small feeder fish and insects. Black Necked Swans do not make loud noises; rather, they communicate with softer, hissing whistling noises.
They will usually need a larger area of water than other swans.
Also, Black-Necked Swans are not as able to tolerate cold as well as many other birds.
Black Neck Swans grow to about 50 inches in length and usually weigh between eight and 15 pounds. Males are usually about a third larger than females.
These swans are pristine white in color, except for their necks and heads, which are black. The contrast is clearly marked and makes an amazingly unique color pattern in these swans. The gray bills of Black Necked Swans have red lobes at their bases.
A white line connects the bill to the eye. Black Necked Swans spend the majority of their time swimming, since the position of their legs is so far back on their bodies that they are not particularly adept at land travel.
Black Necked Swans are native to South America in regions south of Brazil including southern Brazil. They are quite valuable in captivity because of their docile temperaments and relative rarity in the northern hemisphere, in addition to their exquisite appearance.
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In captivity, Black Necked Swans are usually quite tolerant of other birds kept in their enclosures. They may become more territorial around breeding season.
If you are keeping several pairs, you may wish to separate them at this time.
Generally, these Swans construct flimsy, non-permanent nests that are not as elaborate as the nests of many other swans. The breeding season occurs in late summer.
They will defend these sites fiercely, chasing away other waterfowl. The eggs incubate for around 36 days. Black Necked Swans usually raise about four to five cygnets who are carried on the backs of their parents when they are not feeding.
By the time they are two years old, the gray cygnets will have acquired their mature black and white coloration.
In the Northern Hemisphere, Black Necked Swans may begin to lay as early as January, so precautions will be needed to prevent the eggs from freezing. Generally, extra straw can be provided to allow the swans to cover the eggs well.