Trumpeter Swans in California
The status of the Trumpeter Swan in California has been a matter of considerable controversy. The
Trumpeter Swan Society has suggested that as many as 200 birds may winter in California. However, the only
firm evidence is a mere 21 accepted records out of a total of 58 sightings reviewed by the California
Bird Records Committee. Click here for a draft summary
of these records contributed by Michael Patten.
This year, Rod Hug has volunteered to track all sightings of Trumpeter Swan
in California. If you see a Trumpeter Swan please use this report
form. For more information on Trumpeter Swan identification, click here.
This page will be updated regularly as new sightings come in to Rod. This season the following sightings have
- 11/16/98: Mark Ackerman saw an adult Trumpeter north of Desmond Rd, Cosumnes River.
- 12/16/98: Jim Snowden heard a Trumpeter in Dist 10 about 6 miles north of Marysville.
- 12/19/98: Todd Easteria heard and saw an adult Trumpeter at the Bobelaine
Audubon Sanctuary, Sutter County.
- 12/22/98: Bruce Webb saw a collared adult female Trumpeter (93V) and probable juvenile in western Placer County.
This Trumpeter was banded, collared and released in the Bear River, Preston, Idaho on 11/7/96. On 12/23/98
Rolf Mahl observed 93V in the same location as seen by Bruce Webb on 12/22/98. 93V was seen in the Regina
area, Saskatchewan on 10/25/97. 93V was observed on 12/15/98 and again on 1/14/99 at Henrys Fork, Idaho.
- 12/29/98: Mike Feighner saw a family of 5 Trumpeters (2 adults, 3 juveniles) in Clair Engle Lake, Trinity County.
- 1/8/99: Jim and Debby Parker saw a collared adult female Trumpeter (8V0) in Pleasant Valley Reservoir, Inyo
County. 8V0 was banded, collared and released at Harriman State Park, NE Idaho on 12/7/96. 8V0 was last seen prior
to the California sighting at Yellowstone Lake on 12/11/97. 8V0 remained at Pleasant Valley Reservoir until
13 Feb 99, and was last seen there by Debby Parker. During her stay in Inyo County 8V0 attracted much attention.
She was the subject of newspaper reporters, television cameras and visits by school children. Click here
for photos of her (small photo), (large
- On 2/22/99 Tom Heindel found 8V0 in the Tinehama Reservoir just south of Big Pine. 8V0 was associating
with 8 Tundra Swans. George Chaniot also observed 8V0 at Tinehama on 2/23/99. 8V0 was last seen at Tinehama
on 2/27/99 by Tom Heindel.
- 1/22/99: David Yee sighted and heard 3 Trumpeters flying south over Staten Island. The Trumpeters were flying
with 4 Tundra Swans.
- 1/24/99: John Trochet heard a Trumpeter in the fog at Cosumnes River Preserve.
- 3/8/99: Ronnie Ryno, Assistent Modoc Refuge Manager, observed eight Trumpeter Swans at the Modoc NWR.
The swans were flying low over the refuge. All of the swans were the same size within normal individual
variations, and most or all were vocalizing
It is expected that all sightings generated by this project will be reviewed by the California Bird Records