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Feeding Adult Swans – Captive Swans Need to be Fed

January 20th, 2015 | Posted by LadyNerkle1 in Feeding Adult Swans - Captive Swans Need to be Fed - (Comments Off on Feeding Adult Swans – Captive Swans Need to be Fed)

BIG Beautiful, Graceful Mute Swans are a Delight to Behold.

Once we Pinion or Clip to Ground them,
Swans DEPEND on their Caretakers to Provide a Healthy Diet.
Captive Trumpeter, Black Australian and Mute Swans are Domestic Pets.

Feeding Captive Swans

ALL CAPTIVE SWANS NEED TO BE FED !!!

I Originally Organized and Posted this Topic Page because I had Met Several People
who Did Not or Would Not Feed their Swans..

To Enlarge Images – Right Click Image then Open in a New Tab.

Over the Years we have Learned many Things about Feeding Swans.
There is much more then Filling a Feed Bowl each Day.

Feeding Captive Swans

The Basic Feed Mixture Information is at the End of this Page.

 Feeding Captive Swans

NOTE: If a Swan tries to Eat TOO Fast..
Dry Feeds may get STUCK in their Esophagus and Block Swallowing.
Forming a Condition called “CHOKE.”
         This could be an Emergency…

SWAN Esophagus-Food
Feeding Swans

Supply Water with DRY Feed Mixtures.

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Over the Years I have heard: >>( Too many Times .)
 “Swans are Wild Waterfowl. Nature will Provide.”   
“They will Find the Food they Need and do not need Supplemental Feed.”

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

The Pond Above has Little to NO Water Plants for these Swans to Graze on.

The Spring and Summer Environments that Swans and their Cygnets Live and Grow in
will ALL be Different.

The Pond Below has a Lot of Natural Plant Growth, String Algae and Water Critters.

Captive Mute Swans 
Feeding Swans

This Misconception to NOT Feed Swans seems to come from Various Sources..
Some Breeders may Live in Areas where there is Year Round Food Resources in their Pond.

Lots of Plant Growth, Insects, Tadpoles, Worms, Snails, Grubs, etc.
They Pass this Information on to Others without Considering
the Environmental Differences in Ponds and Lakes across the Country.

Natural Creek
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

The Remaining Feral Mute Swans Living in the United States will, on Average,
have a Territory Range of 3 to 5 SQUARE Miles that they will Access for their Nutritional Needs.
In Warmer States there may be Plenty of Vegetation, Grass Grains and Insects Year Round.

Migrating Tundra Swans
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Canadian Tundra and Trumpeter Swans Migrate South during the Fall to Areas
they know will Provide Food for themselves and their Growing Cygnets.

These Swans will graze on Grains in Fields of Cereal Crops like Corn, Wheat, Soy Beans..
Trumpeter and Tundra Swans are more Likely to be Seen in Grain Fields.

Migrating Tundra Swans
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Mute Swans are more Likely to be in a Watery Place.

Below are Three Feral Mute Swans Living Along a Pennsylvania River.

Mute Swans in Winter
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Mute Swans are NOT Migratory Waterfowl..
They will Stay in their Territory Year Round their Entire Adult Life,
Unless something Significant Changes for them…
Loss of Habitat, Loss of a Mate… Chronic Harassment.

Feeding Captive Swans
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Feral Mute Swan will Fly/Move to Open Water in Winter Months
if their Normal Water Environment Freezes.

Their Absence during Nesting Season may cause some Folks
to think these Mute Swans have Migrated.
Feral-Wild Mute Swans will Generally Seek a more Private Location to Nest.

Mute Swans Nesting
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

For Whatever Reason: “Wild-Feral Mute Swans Do Not Nest where they Live,
and they Do Not Live where they Nest.”

For Two Months, Feral Mute Swans will likely Find a Private Place to Mate,
Nest and Hatch their Brood of Cygnets.

Mute Swan Nest
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

The Location may only be a Half Mile or so away from their Normal Range.
They are likely to Return to their Normal Territory once their Nest is “Closed” for the Season.
Returning with Tiny Cygnets that are NOT Capable of Flying or Migrating.

Feeding Adult Mute Swans 
 Mute Swan Cygnets

MUTE SWANS DO NOT MIGRATE.

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In the Parts of the Country where Winter Climate causes Plant Materials to become Dormant,
Feral Mute Swans will have a Much Harder Time Finding Satisfactory Sustenance Food.

Mute Swans Winter
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

If Swans are Caring for First Year Cygnets..
This may cause the Smaller Cygnets to Weaken and Die from Starvation.
Cygnets that Hatch Late in the Season are Especially at Risk..

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

I have watched Feral Mute Swans Attempt to Eat the Decaying Vegetation and Leaves
they find in Shallow Water; the same Plants that provided Food during the Warmer Seasons.
This Organic Material will have some Small Food Value,
there may be a Few Calories Left in the Decaying Fibers.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

During Warm Weather, Lawn and Field Grasses will Yield Tasty Insects.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

With the Summer Lawn Grasses to Graze on.. Watch for Under Chin-Tongue Impactions..
Short Cut Grass is a Common Culprit..

If you Only Mow 1/3 of the Grass along the Pond each Week. Leaving 2 Areas Grow..
Swans ENJOY the Tender Grass Growth..
Then the Next Week, Mow a Different Area.. (Rotating)
There will be Some Longer Grass Blades for the Swans to Graze on.

Allow a Strip of Grass to Grow along the Pond – the Grass Seed Heads will be a Treat.

Plus the Longer Grasses will have more Insects for the Swans to Munch on.
(-; (-: (-; (-:

Under Chin – Under Tongue Impactions will Make Eating DIFFICULT !!
  This Swan NEEDED Help..

Swan Under Tongue Impaction
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

The Under Tongue/Chin Impaction was Preventing her from Eating.

Under Tongue-Chin Impaction
https://swanlovers.net/category/under-tongue-chin-impaction/

Swan Under Chin Impaction
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Removing these Wads of Junk-Debris from under the Tongue is Simple,
ONCE you have Hold of your Swan..

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When there is Snow Cover on Lawns and Fields, they will not even have this Meager Food Source.
Hungry Waterfowl will Pick at Field and Lawn Grasses Attempting to find some Calories..
Something to Fill their Gizzard.

Swans Snow Covered Lawn
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

All Living Creatures Can Live for a Period of Time without Adequate Food,
as Long as they have Water to Drink.
Swans Living on Ponds/Lakes have Water.. but, Foods MAY be VERY Scarce.

Swan Winter Feed
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Swans are Warm Blooded Creatures, they have a Metabolism like all Warm Blooded Creatures.

Healthy Mute Swan
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

When Food is Limited or Absence they will Slow Down,
Try to Conserve and Convert their Body Fat, Muscle Proteins
– Losing Weight the Same as any Animal or Human.

Underweight Mute Swan
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Wild/Free Waterfowl will Generally Fly in Search of Food.
Pinioned/Captive/Fenced Waterfowl that are Starving
will become increasingly Desperate
and will Eat increasing amounts of Mud and Soft Topsoil.
There are some Organic Materials and Minerals in Mud and Topsoil…

Feeding Captive Swans
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Hopefully a few Dormant Insect Grubs, Worms, Snails, etc.
These Critters are Calcium and Protein Rich..

Feeding Captive Swans
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

If this goes on Too Long, their Gizzard may become “Sand Bound.”
Topsoil and Mud contains Silica/Sand.

Sand feels Gritty when Rubbed between the Fingers.
Birds/Waterfowl regularly Ingest Small Amounts of Grit to Aid Digestion
of the Food in their Gizzard. Eating Small Amounts of Dirt, Mud is Normal.
When Digestible Food is Absent for Long Periods of Time,

the Gizzard may become “Sand Bound.”

Once this happens there is NO Room for Digestible Food….
Death from Starvation will likely follow.
************************
Sand is a Naturally Occurring Granular Material Composed of
Finely Divided Rock and Mineral Particles.
The Composition of Sand is Highly Variable,
depending on the Local Rock Sources and Conditions.
The Most Common Constituent of Sand in Inland Continental Settings
and Non-Tropical Coastal Settings is Silica (silicon dioxide, or SiO2),
usually in the Form of Quartz.

Feeding Captive Swans
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Sand is NOT Digestible.
It will Pass Through a Bird’s Digestive System
along with the Plant Fiber of their Normal Diet.
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Until now, I was Referring to the Feral Mute Swans Living in a 3-5 Square Miles Range.

Since Pennsylvania and Many other States have ZERO Tolerance Policy for Feral Mute Swans.
The Above Information is Academic.. FYI – Feral Mute Swan are Routinely Destroyed.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Their Freedom was Short Lived.. Images Posted onLine Brought Hunters..

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Next, I want to Discuss Captive Swans Living in the Care of Human Caretakers.  
Living in a much Smaller Environment.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Captive Swans are No Different then Pet Dogs, Cats, Horses, etc.  
They NEED to EAT ! !

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Just Like Cat, Dogs, Horses, etc..
Swans are Warm Blooded, they have Blood, Brain and Nerve Fibers.
They have Skin Tissue, Many Muscles, Light Weight Bones.   
And Beautiful White Feathers.
All these Body Systems NEED Nutrients.

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**** CAPTIVE SWANS NEED TO BE FED !!!!

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

All Animals and Birds we Bring into our Lives are Subject to a Wide Range of Care.
From the Total Care of Pets that become Cherished Members of our Family Life,
to Farm Live Stock Raised for their Meat, Milk, Eggs, etc.

Back Yard Chickens
Feeding Swans

..To the Sad Neglected, Forgotten, Discarded, Abused Animal Cruelty Cases
We see on various TV Animal Rescue Programs.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

The Female Mute Swan in the above Image..
She and her Brother were Fed Floating Fish Pellets..
Fish Pellets Average 35% Protein.. this will cause Lipidosis Over Time.
He Died before he was 18 Months Old and she Died at 4 Years Old. 

LIPIDOSIS: a Disorder of Fat Metabolism especially Involving the Deposition
of Fat in an Organ ( as the Liver or Spleen ).

Mute Swans Need to Eat
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

She Never got to Lay her First Egg..
Both were found Floating in their Pond.. ( at Different Times.)
I Tried to tell these Folks.. they would not Listen..

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Swans Fed a High Protein Diet …Look Big and Healthy… They are NOT Healthy.

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Folks who have Appropriate Water Environments to Care for Swans,
may Desire to have them for Various Reasons.
Not all People will take the Time to Research Swans
so they are Prepared to Provide Appropriate Care.

Swan Poor Diet
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

The Swans I WORRY about are the Swans Chosen to be Living Lawn and Pond Ornaments.

Swans are NOT Lawn or Pond Ornaments
https://swanlovers.net/category/swans-are-not-lawn-ornaments/

The Striking Beauty of Graceful Swans will Enhance any Property.
The Novelty of having Swans may Pass and Neglect is likely to Follow.

Having Swans is a Commitment.
They may easily Live 25-35 Years or Longer with Good Care and Some Luck.

Healthy Male Mute Swan
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

If you Tire of Caring for your Swans, ReHome them to another Interested Person.
NEVER Release any Swan into the Environment. NEVER.. ! !
It is ILLEGAL ALL Across the United States and Canada
to Deliberately Release a Mute Swan or their Growing Cygnets.
Discarded Pet Swans will likely be Destroyed.

Discarded Pet Swan
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

            This Gentle Swan was Shot by a Hunter in 2008.

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There are so many Different Regulation Governing the Ownership of Mute Swans
from State to State, You will need to check the Codes, Policies and Rules for your State..

Where to Find Mute Swan Information for Your State
https://swanlovers.net/category/where-to-find-mute-swan-information-for-your-state/

Feeding Captive Swans
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

“Can Animal Rights Be Legally Defined?”
In 1978 the HSUS, Humane Society of the United States defined Animal Rights.
“Animals have the right to live and grow under conditions
that are comfortable and reasonably natural.  
Animals that are used by man in any way have the right to be free from abuse,
pain, and torment caused or permitted by man.
Animals that are domesticated or whose natural environment is altered by man
have the right to receive from man adequate food, shelter, and care.”
Changes to their Environment or the Landscaping may Alter their Food Supplies.

Pinioned Mute Swan
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Pinioning any Waterfowl… Changes Everything.

In the U.S. Mute Swans “Owned” by Humans are generally Pinioned
to Restrict their Ability to Roam at Large.

They are Classified as:
Captive, Domestic, Exotic, Poultry. (Not Wild)

Like ALL Animals and Birds Living in Captivity.
They are Entitled to:  
 1. Adequate and Appropriate Food
2. Adequate Fresh Water
3. Appropriate Shelter
 4. Reasonable Safety from Harm
 5. Veterinary Care when Needed

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

The First Rule for Keeping Swans in the Location you want them…. is
  #1. “Feed them and they will Stay.”
Feeding Your Swans is NOT a Guarantee they will Stay on your Pond.
Adequate Food is a BIG Part of their Comfort.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Swans on a Private Pond are Somewhere between Captive and Free.

“Swans do NOT Read the Books” about their Expected Behavior.
Swans will have many Surprises as you Enjoy their Beauty and Learn about them.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Mother Nature has Evolved Birds/WaterFowl to be able to do some Amazing Things.
Living without Food is Not One.. Imagine Watching these Captive, Graceful Birds,
unable to tell their Caretakers that they are Hungry.
Respect and Good Care will allow Swans to Enjoy Living with us/you for a Long Time.

Swan Diet
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Spread the WORD…. Swans need to Eat.

Living on a Totally Natural One Acre Pond with NO Chemicals to Altering the Plant Growth
and Insects is Recommended for One Pair of Adult Mute Swans.

Natural Rural Pond
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

The Swans can Graze during the Summer on Yummy Stuff – Pond Stew..

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Water Insects, Tadpoles, Fish Spawn, Dragonfly Larva, ETC, Etc…. Pond Critters.

Snails and Slugs provide many needed Nutrients..
You will see them Poking into Shallow Mud seeking Things to Munch on..

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

    A Natural Pond “MAY” Supply all the Swan’s Need.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

The use of Lawn Care Products, Insect Controls and Fertilizers Changes the Natural Balance.

Underwater Plants may not be Sufficient,
the Lack of Insects will impact Protein and Calcium Resources.

If Swans Need to Leave their Water to Eat…. they become Vulnerable to Predators,
Unleashed Dogs, Vehicles and Vandals who Look to Harm them.

Pinioned and Clipped Swans are more Vulnerable when they are Away from their Ponds.
Swans in Water are SAFER…. It is also more Natural for them…

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

The Lovely 1 – 1/2 Acres Golf Course Irrigation Pond in the Below Image
had NOTHING Growing in the Water.  NO Plants, DuckWeed or Algae..   
AND…No Water Insects or Mosquitoes  ! !

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

There were Lots of Common Carp, Blue Gill and Bass.
The Fish Populations were Consuming the Few Natural Plants & Insects.. 

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Carp EAT a Variety of Foods. They favor Insects, Aquatic Worms, Crustaceans.
They consume Algae and Under Water Plant Matter.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

These are the Same Pond Things the Swans would Eat..

Swans Long Necks can reach down under the Water about Three Feet.
You will see them “Up-Ending” with their Tails Pointing Straight up in the Air.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans
Up - Ending

Use a Rake and Sweep Along the Water Edge Two to Three Feet Down..
Are there Under Water Plant.. ??  Or are they Absent.. ???
Your Swans MAY/Will NEED Daily Feeding Year Round..

Captive Black Australian Swans
Feeding Swans

The Public Park Lake Above is Treated with Dark Shade Dye to Prevent Algae and Duckweed.
There are NO Natural Plants – NONE.

Organic Pond Run Off
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Fertilizers and Animal Waste Run-off will create Organic Changes to a Pond/Lake
allowing for a Wide Variety of unwanted Plant Growth.  Big Subject…. LOTS of Variations.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Waterfowl/Swans may be able to Help Control some Nuisance Plants..
like Algae, Duckweed and Watermeal..
but, they still need other Nutrients in their Year Round Diet.

Pond Watermeal Duckweed
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Swans are LARGE Waterfowl… They may Foul a Small Retention Pond with their Poop !
A Water Environment with Flow-through to Refresh the Water is Preferable.

Feeding Swans
Swans Retention Pond
Organic Waste  Poop

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Mute Swans can Live a Very Long Time with Good Care.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

The Less they Need to Dig in the Mud/Dirt for Nutrition,
the Less Chance they will Acquire Parasites.

Because Mute Swans Feed off the Bottom Mud of a Pond or Lake,
which is where Pesticides and Heavy Metals tend to Accumulate,
Severe Drought may Expose your Swans to Dangerous MUCK..

Pond Muck: is the Black, Brown, Sticky, Slimy Goop that Settles on the Bottom
of most Ponds and Lakes. It tends to Build-up over time without Methods to Prevent it.
Muck Results from Dying and Decaying Organics like Algae, Tree Debris-Leaves,
Excessive Grass Clippings, Animal Waste Run-off, Fish Waste, Etc.

Mute Swan Pens Eating Digging 
 in Mud for Insect Larva 
Feeding Swans

During Warm Dry Months, Stagnant Muddy Water will put Waterfowl at Risk
of Fatal Clostridia and other Pathogenic Anaerobic Bacteria.
These Bacteria Synthesize and Release Poisonous Substances called Exotoxins

We lost Little “Hannah” to Clostridia after Nesting in 2010.
We lost Sweet “Spring” to Clostrida after Nesting in 2018.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Providing a Container of Fresh Clean Water would seem Helpful…

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

But, Waterfowl will still Drink the Pond/Lake Water.

Mute Swan Mud
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

His World is Nothing but Water and Mud.
( We Brought this Feral Cob Food and Treats. )

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There are Pro and Con Discussion about Feeding Wild Waterfowl-Swans Bread.
Captive Pet Swans should have a Good Appropriate Diet..

What NOT to Feed Swans: Anything that is NOT Healthy for us:
Sugary, Starchy, Fatty Foods, Crackers, Pop-Corn, Chips, Cakes, Cookies, etc.

Milk Dairy Products: Birds Lack the Enzymes Necessary to Digest Milk Sugar, Lactose.
Do NOT Feed Swans Onions, Garlic, Mushrooms or Avocado.

We Avoid Bread. DO NOT ALLOW others to Feed your Swans Bread.
There is Little to No Nourishment in White Bread for Waterfowl.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans    Bread

White Bread is Poorly Digested, causing Indigestion and Bloating.
Yeast may Grow in the Gizzard causing Chronic Digestion Problems.
Bread is High in Sugar and Salt Taxing a Birds’ Kidneys and other Organs.

The Swans and other Waterfowl Below – Live on a Popular Community Lake.
The Public brings the Waterfowl mostly Bread ALL Day Long.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans    Bread

During the Summer Months Bread is a Dangerous Food for Waterfowl.
Molds Growing on Bread may be Fatal.
Some Molds will cause Fatal “Limber Neck” Disease.
Once the Toxic Mold is in the Swan, there is VERY Little you can do
to Reverse these Debilitating Toxic Secretions. Their Mortality Rate is Very High.
The Swan becomes Weak, can not hold their Neck up.. becomes Limp.

Feeding Swans   Bread
Limber Neck Clostridia

If they are in the Water, they may Drown.
On Land, the Weakness will Affect their Ability to Breathe.

The Hazards of Feeding BREAD to Swans/Waterfowl
https://swanlovers.net/category/bread-is-a-no-for-swans/

If YOU want to Feed Swans Bread, then ONLY during Cold Winter Months
(Fall Frost to Last Spring Frost).
Buy FRESH, Freeze and Feed One Slice per Day Coarse Grain or Wholemeal Bread
with Seeds and Grains Incorporated into the Bread is a Better Option.

Feeding Swans Bread

The Grain Seeds Provide some Extra Oils, which Aid the Absorption
of Fat Soluble Vitamins – like Vitamin A, C, D, E, K, Thiamine, Riboflavin,
Niacin, B6, B12, Folic Acid,       …ALL Important for Good Health.

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If you Enjoy having Swans, the BEST Thing you can do for them is
Provide a Wide Variety of Food Items.

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Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

It “Should be Reasonable” to think that Dog Food is for Dogs,
Cat Food is for Cats and Horse Feed is for Horses…

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

PLEASE DO NOT Feed these Feed Formulas to Swans.

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SWAN FEEDING 
Chewy Delivery

Chewy.com is a Great Way to Order and have Many Feed Products Delivered.
. . . with Orders of at Least $50.00 – Delivery is Free.

This Saves Time and Gas.. Thanks Chewy !

Choose a Good Commercial Poultry or WaterFowl Feed:
**NON-Medicated **Poultry Maintenance Feed
       Mixed with Corn and Grain to Keep the Protein Level LOWER.

Keep the Lysine Level LOW – One Percent – 1.00%or Less.

It is Not Wise to Purchase Bag Feeds Too Far Ahead.
If you Live where there is HUMIDITY.. In the South or North in Summer Months.
Heat and Humidity can Cause Mold to Develop in UnOpened Bags – Spoiling the Feed.
NEVER Use ANY Feed that Looks or Smells Moldy.. DISCARD !

Corn and Grain Feeds may Hatch Tiny Harmless Insects in Hot Storage Areas..

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans  Corn

These Tiny Insects – Likely Corn or Wheat Weevils are OK for Swans to Eat.
Swans EAT Lots of Insects – They are Part of their Natural Diet.

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Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans
Corn and Grain Feeds

The Earth is NOT Homogeneous.
You will NOT Find ALL Minerals and Trace Elements Naturally Everywhere.
Deficiency in Vitamins is a Common Problem with Captive Waterfowl.

By Using a Good Formulated Feed..
It will not Matter where in the World your Swans are
they will be Getting Necessary Vitamins and Minerals and Trace Elements..

All Needed for Good Nutrition and Health.

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Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

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We > > HAD BEEN USING   
**Southern States 18% Waterfowl Floating Pellets 2015 thru 2019. 
 WE STOPPED !

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

This Feed Product has Changed..
Most Folks in my Network who were Using this Bag Feed have Stopped.  
The Southern States Feed is NOT Consistent in Size or Color.. and it Barely Float.
This  has > > > Changed ! A Sad Fact !

Most Folks who Care for Swans have Decided to Use
Mazuri Floating WaterFowl Feed.
Mazuri WaterFowl Feed has been Used by Swan Owners for many Years.
This Product is Available Across most of the Country.

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The First Thing I ask Swan Folks who have Swans Die without any Obvious Reason..
Is… What were You Feeding them..???
If the Answer is a High Protein Diet.. Be Aware ! !

A Steady High Protein Diet will Significantly Shorten a Swan’s Life..
Every Year I hear from Folks who have “Healthy” Swans Die without a Reason.. 
They are Unaware of this being an Issue..

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Their Swans LOOK Big and Healthy.. and are Suddenly Found Dead..
NO Visible Reason.   It Fits a Sad Pattern..
Swans Fed a High Protein Diet.. will Frequently Die within Several Years.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

We had a Young Female, “Little Hannah” that someone else was Feeding for us… 
She was on a Pond with their Young Swans..
In ONE Month “Hannah’s” Kidneys were Permanently Damaged.

I Provided the Feed Mixture I wanted for our Female..
but, the Woman kept giving “Hannah” her Feed..
Straight from the Bag – 16% Protein Grower.. We Moved “Hannah” ASAP… 

Feeding Swans 
High Protein Feeds

We took “Hannah” for Several Visits to the Vets.. for Blood Chemistries..
Results.. Elevated Kidney Functions – Three Times Normal !
We Repeated these Chemistries Several Times, Hoping for Improvement..
NOPE – Her Kidney Damage was Permanent.   
So…. we had to Feed “Hannah” a Diet with Very Little Protein.
She did not get to be 4 Years Old. Heartbreaking..

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

We lost Little “Hannah” to Clostridia after Nesting in 2010.

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Swans NEED more Supplemental Food during Cold Weather.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Depending on the Winter Conditions, Swans will need more Calories
when they are Subject to Winter’s Cold Temperatures.  Increase their Daily Feed Rations.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

They need Daily Food for the Quick Energy Calories to keep Warm.
Avoid Yeast, Sugar, Dyes and Salt.

Swans Cereal Snack Mix
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Swans Cereal Snack Mix         I Check the Ingredients..
Choose Cereals that are Low in SALT, SUGAR, have NO DYES or YEAST.
Whole Grain Cereals are Better Treats then MOST Human Snack Foods.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

We try to use Cereals that Float.. Cereals that Sink are Wasted. ( Become Fish Food. )
OR Place the Cereal Treat in a Shallow Pan of Pond Water..
One of our Little Pens LOVED the Gritty Grape Nuts Mixed in with Wet Whole Corn.

Feeding Captive Swans
Swans Cereal Snack Mix

Plain Kix, Whole Grain Cheerios, Plain Corn and Bran Flakes Float.

Swans Cereal Snack Mix
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Then there are a Few Times when the Cereal is just Silly Fun !

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Occasional some Tossed Cereals Lands on their Back – Between their Wings.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

No Fuss – No Muss – Just Turn their Lovely, Long Neck for the Treats !

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans
Swans Cereal Snack Mix
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Some Swans enjoy Plain Graham Crackers. 

Mute Swan Treats Graham Crackers
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

These can be Broken into One Inch Squares.. and Frisbeed Out to the Swans.

Swans Cereal Snack Mix 
Graham Crackers
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

It is Proper Order to give the First Treat to the Dominant Female Swan
then alternate between the other Swans on the Pond. 

 Feeding Swans  Graham Crackers
Swans Cereal Snack Mix

If there are Lots of Fish in the Water, they will QUICKLY Snatch these Treats.

Swans Cereal Snack Mix
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Swans are Grazers not Gobblers.

Swans are Grazers – Eating Small Amounts throughout the Day.
Their Food goes into their Gizzard to be Ground into a Form they are able to
Digest/Absorb… Swans will Ingest some “Grit” everyday to Aid this Breakdown…

Swans Naturally Eat Small Amounts throughout the Day.
Since Swans are Programmed to Fly, they will Generally Not Over Eat.
Every Extra Ounce their Body does Not Need will make Flight more Difficult.
When their Diet is Not Balanced, they may Over Eat Starchy Grains ( like Corn ),
Trying to get the Minerals and Vitamins their Body’s are Craving.

Mute Swans Grazing
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

The Bone Structure of Birds is a Light-Weight Scaffolding.
There are just Enough Minerals to Form Rigid Bones.

BIG Swan Eggs
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Female Swans need Extra Calcium Rich Feeds.
Females Give-up their Body Calcium to Coat their Large Eggs.
Once the Cygnets Hatch, the Female Usually Ingests the Shells
to Reclaim some of this Calcium.

Mute Swan Nest
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

If the Female is not able to Eat these Shells due to some Loss of the Eggs
– Due to Flooding, Spoiling, Egg Predation
or Management Replacement Removal she will Benefit from your Help.

Mute Swan Eggs
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

To help Supply your Pen’s Calcium Need, it is a Very Good Practice Starting in January,
to Add some Egg Layer Feed to their Regular Feed Mix.
The Eggs she Lays in the Spring will be Stronger
and she will Not Need to Sacrifice as much Calcium from her Body.

Crushed Poultry Oyster Shell
Feeding Captive Swans

There are Commercial Crushed Oyster Shell Products for Poultry to Supply Necessary Calcium.
I See this Frequently in Containers on Farms with Chickens.
I had to Laugh at the Hen Above Nesting in the Oyster Shell Bucket.
But, REMEMBER having Any Feed in a Metal Container OUTSide is NOT Safe.

Nesting Female Swan
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Once her Cygnets Hatch, the (Female-Pen) Dam Swan is HUNGRY for EVERYTHING.
A Good Balanced Feed Mix with some Extra Calcium, will Help her Body Recover
from the Five LONG Weeks of “Sitting” with VERY little to Eat.

“Sitting”Pens Barely Eat for 35 Days… >>>> This is Nature’s Plan.
They Typically will Start to EAT the Two Days before their EGGs are going to Hatch.. 
( A Signal to Watch for. )

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Because their Necks are Long and Slender Swans want to Eat their Foods Wet..

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Swans have a Wide, Flat Beak with Tiny Serrations called “Lamella” along the edge.
Their Beak is Designed for Biting and Tearing Water Plants.
As Swans Open and Close their Beak, they Strain Water from their Food.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Corn Alone is NOT a Complete Diet.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans
SWAN Esophagus-Food
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Swans are Grazers.. they Nibble all Day.

Because their Neck is Long and Slender,
Swans like to have Water with Every Bite to make Swallowing EASIER.

Mute Swans Grazing
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

NOTE: If a Swan Tries to Eat TOO Fast..
The Dry Feed may get STUCK in their Esophagus and Block Swallowing. 

Forming a Condition called “CHOKE.”
         This could be an Emergency… 

Choke or Choking means that a Cygnet/Swan is unable to Swallow or Breathe
because something is either Partially or Completely Obstructing their
Esophagus or their Windpipe.

A Swan that is Choking will have Difficulty Swallowing,
it may be Gasping for Breath, or it may be Opening the Beak
with an Exaggerated Motion and Attempting to Regurgitate or Gag.

The Cygnet/Swan may begin Extending and Twisting its Neck, Gasping for Air.

Place the Cygnet/Swan on your Lap – Lower the Head and Neck..
Gently Manipulate Along the Neck to Dislodge the Obstruction.

If you Suspected that the Cygnet/Swan has Inhaled a Fluid or Small Object
that has Entered the Trachea ( Windpipe ), you can Attempt to Dislodge,
by Short Quick Inward Compression of the Keel/Breast Area.
You are Basically Preforming the Standard Heimlich Maneuver
that is used for a Choking Human.

Listen for Air Exchange.. that the Cygnet/Swan is Breathing..
Place your EAR on their Back between the Wings.. Listen for Breath Sounds.
Seek Veterinary Assistance/Advice Immediately following this Maneuver.

If you Suspect your Swan has Aspirated you Should Seek Veterinary Care Immediately.
Your Cygnet/Swan may need Antibiotics to Prevent Pneumonia.

Supply Water with DRY Feed Mixtures.
Do NOT Put Dry Feeds on the Ground.
This will Promote Mold, Bacteria, Parasites, etc.

*************************************************************

When Food-Feed is only Available Once or Twice a Day,
Shared from a Tub or Bucket for Assorted Waterfowl,
a Swan will Gobble in a Hurry knowing there will be Nothing
until the Bucket is Filled Later or the Next Day.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

The Swan Below was Eating TOO Fast his Neck is Bulging.
This is NOT Normal Eating Behavior for a Swan.
This is the way Ducks and Geese Eat.. they are Gobblers.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

************************************************************

Migrating WaterFowl may Bring Diseases to Your Pond.
IF you are Able to Avoid Feeding them.. Try Not to..

Migrating Ducks
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

One Scary Disease is Duck Viral Enteritis.   DVE
Another is Avian Influenza.. Very Contagious.
Healthy Domestic Ducks, Geese and Swans will Start to Die in just a few Days.
While the Wild Carrier Waterfowl just Fly Away.
*****************************************************

Try to find a Way to Feed your Swans so they Do Not Need to Leave the Water.
They are SAFEST in the Water. Swans WANT Water with their Feed-Foods.

Feed Swan in Water
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Try to Find a Place You will be SAFE
Servicing their Food-Feed Station in the Winter.
*****************************************************

Some Feeding Ideas. Many Thanks to All who Shared their Ideas.
Things to Think about. Nice to Vary Feedings for the Swans…

Swan Feeding Station Ideas
https://swanlovers.net/category/feeding-stations-for-swans/

Swan Vegetarian
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

In addition to a Healthy Feed Mixture REMEMBER Swans are Vegetarians.

Swans are Vegetarians
https://swanlovers.net/category/swans-are-vegetarians/

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

IF YOUR LAWN DOES NOT HAVE CHEMICAL LAWN CARE PRODUCTS.

A Good Source of Fiber and Crude Plant Protein is Lawn Grass.
This has a Natural Low Protein Level… 4% or less…

They like Fresh Cut “Untreated” Grass.. Put Out into the Pond.

Swan Fresh Grass
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Grass Floats and they can Graze on it. Not Enough to Clog Drains or Spillways..
But, maybe a Gallon or so…
Just be sure the Mower Bag does NOT contain any MOLD..

Fresh Pond DuckWeed
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

The Swans Above have a Treat of DuckWeed not Normally in their Pond.
Their Owner Visits a Friend with DuckWeed on his Pond and Brings Home a Bucket FULL.

************************************************************************

SWANS LOVE LETTUCE…
If you Toss a Head of Iceberg Lettuce on the Pond..
They will Play with it like a Soccer Ball.  Or Push it Under to Pop-Up.
Fun to Watch them Take Turns, Biting the Head and Tossing it About.

Swans Lettuce
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Lettuce Play – “Let-Us-Play”
https://swanlovers.net/category/lettuce-play/

***********************************************

When I Opened and Drained a Can of Tuna.. Both Oil or Water Packed,
I Saved the Fluid to Mix with their Lettuce. SWANs LOVE THIS !!!

********************************************************

A FUN TREAT is to Catch or Buy a Few Crickets..
Toss them One at a Time, Out on the Water near the Swans.
Ours would Only Eat 2-3 per Day. But, they do like them…

***********************************************************************

*** Swans are VERY Sensitive to METAL.
Best NOT to Store Feed in a Metal Container, unless it is Lined with
a HEAVY Plastic Bag.. or Kept in the Original Feed Bag.

Swan Lead Zinc
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Galvanized Feed Container WILL Contaminate Feed with LEAD and ZINC.

Galvanized Feeders
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

*********************************************************

Keep ANY Small Metal Items Picked-Up.
Swans, like other Waterfowl, will Ingest Small Stones for their Gizzards.
If they Ingest a Screw, Nut, Nail, Piece of Wire, a Coin, Soda Can Tab, Bread Twist Tie, etc.
This may become a Fatal Snack.   Ingested Metal Litter is Called “Hardware Disease.”
“Kate” looked Healthy… Died Suddenly within a Week of this Photo.
Her Necropsy Found a Small Piece of Iron in her Gizzard.

Swan Metal Poisoning
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

The Metal Items will STAY in their Gizzard and Slowly Dissolve.
Your Swan will become Heavy Metal Toxic..
Destroying their Liver and other Organs.
Heavy Metal Poisoning is VERY Difficult to Treat.

Sharp Metal or Glass can CUT into the Gizzard.. > > > Bleeding or Infection.

Watch for Non-Edible Things in the Water.. Basic Trash..
  I Dropped a Rubber Glove in the Pond..  “Meadow” started to PLAY with it.
I SAW what had Happened..  And, QUICKLY.. Grabbed the Glove.. SIGH !!

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

A Garden Cultivator is a VERY Handy – Pond Tool…

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans 
Garden Cultivator

****************************************************

Use Clean Dedicated Polyvinyl Containers for Feed Safety.

Vinyl Feed Bucket
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

The Metal Pan below is NOT Safe as a Food Container for Poultry and Waterfowl.
The Metal will Slowly Dissolve into the Water.. Heavy Metal Toxic.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans
Heavy Metal Pan

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Every Pond-Lake Situation is Different.
Feeding your Swans can be a Challenge. Brain Storm.

If you have a Canada Goose Problem. They will Raid the Feed.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans
Canada Goose

Large Numbers of Ducks or Geese will Overwhelm a Swan which is Naturally a “Grazer.”
The Ducks and Canada Geese are “Gobblers.”

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans
Canada Geese

Place Food Items in Water Close to the Water’s Edge… not Deeper then they can Reach..
Grain or Seed (or any Food) should Not be Left on the Bank where it can Deteriorate and
Decay, this Rotting Material can Sicken your Waterfowl.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Only put in the Shallow Water what you Expect the Swans will Eat..
Feed or Grain left laying in Water can Spoil and cause Dangerous Bacteria to Grow.

A few Ducks can be Helpful as the Clean-up Crew for Feed Spillage.

Ducks Clean-up
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Fixed Feeders like the Aut-O-Dine have some Draw-Backs and some Advantages.

Swan Feeder – Aut-O-Dine 25
https://swanlovers.net/category/swan-feeder-aut-o-dine-25/

Most Cygnets and Swans Learn to Use the Aut-O-Dine..
Positioned Properly most Canada Geese can NOT Reach the Feed….

Feeding Captive Swans
Aut-O-Dine for Swans

If the Pond Water Level Drops, it will be difficult for the Swans to Reach-in.
OR if the Water Level Rises, the Pesky Geese will Enjoy a Feast.

Swan Aut-O-Dine Feeder
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

One EASY FEED STATION is to use an Old Tire.
(Pick a Nicer One)  AND a Clean Five Gallon Bucket.
(Take the Handle Off – Tangle Hazard.)

Tire Bucket Feeder
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Angle the Bucket as Needed for the Swans to Eat from.
There is a Good Chance the Geese and Ducks will not be able to Reach into the Bucket.
Some Clever Ducks may Jump-in and out.

Tire Bucket Feeder
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

The Bucket is Easy to Clean.. and it can be Taken in at Night.
And can be MOVED as the Water Level Changes.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

ONLY Feed Swans by your Pond.
Put Feed out in Early AM…. have Available during the Day.
Normally Swans Graze from SunRise to SunSet.

They Float Quietly out in the Water at Night.. Trying NOT to be Noticed.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Removing Feed Container at SunSet Discourages Predators.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Feed-Corn Attracts Mice, Shrews, Moles, Voles, Rats, Muskrats,
Squirrels, Rabbits, Woodchucks, Opossums, Deer, Raccoons.

All these Rodents May be Carrying Dangerous Diseases/Parasites.
As they Raid a Feed Container,
they Contaminate the Feed with Saliva, Urine and Poop.

There are some Nasty Diseases Carried by Raccoons.
You do not want them “Pooping” where Children will be Playing.

Mouser Barn Kittens 
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

It is Environmentally UnSafe to Put Swan Feed on the Ground.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

The Smaller Rodents will Attract the Carnivores
– Fox, Coyotes, Coywolves, Roaming Feral Cats, Bobcats.

Depending on your Location maybe a Bear would be attracted to a Feed Container.

Feed and/or Small Rodents may attract Skunks, Weasels,
Mink and Larger Predators like Fox, Lynx, Coyote/Coywolves.
These may take the small Ducklings, Goslings and Cygnets.
Adult Swans become more Vulnerable to Predators.

Have Feed Mixture Available during Day Light Hours Only.

Cover Feed and/or take Inside Over Night.

&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans
Canada Geese

There are Ways to Discourage Geese.. a Few Ducks are Good for Clean-up.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans
Canada Geese

An Aut-O-Dine Feeding Box for Swans – Polyvinyl.
Positioned just out of Reach, Canada Geese can NOT Feed from this Feeder.

Aut-O-Dine for Swans
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Average Cost Varies Year to Year
Out in the Elements these will Need to be Replaced after several Years of Exposure.
They Need a Stable Post to be Mounted on..
These Need Several Modification to Work for Swans.

SWAN FEEDER – Aut-O-Dine 25
https://swanlovers.net/category/swan-feeder-aut-o-dine-25/

&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&

***DO NOT FEED THE SWANS ANY FEED
with “GROWER” or “FINISHER” in the name.
***DO NOT FEED THE SWANS “Game Bird Feed”

Game Bird Feed is for Bird Raised to Shot and Eat.
Wild Duck, Pheasants, Geese.. Game Birds..

The Lysine Levels are TOO HIGH… 
These Feeds are Designed to Increase the Muscle Tissue
and are for Poultry/Fowl headed to someone’s Dinner Table.
These Feeds DAMAGE Internal Organs, Shortening the Natural Life Span of a Swan.
Many Birds fed these Products will Die in 12-36 months.

The Unnatural Increased Muscle Tissue will add Stress to the Swan’s Legs and Feet.
This will Increase the Risk of Painful “Bumble” Foot Sores.
The Swans may look BIG and HEALTHY.. but, they are not.

***UnCaring or UnKnowing Breeders may Feed these “Grower” Feeds…
Without Regards to the Long Term Health of the Swans.
They just want their Cygnets to Grow Fast,
Look BIG and Healthy when they Sell the Young Swan Cygnets.
Sadly, the Damage is Done. Many only Live a Few Years.

At One Pond we Visited, the Swan was being fed Floating Fish Pellets.
The Protein Level in Fish Pellets is 30-40% – WAY TOO HIGH ! !
She Died soon After Turning 4 Years Old.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans
Swan Fish Pellets
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans
Female Swan Died
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

When you Acquire a New Swan ASK the Previous Owner/Breeder
what they have been Feeding the Swan/Cygnet.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

SCRATCH GRAIN IS NOT A COMPLETE DIET.

Scratch is Small Pieces.. It is Cracked Corn and Cracked Wheat.
By Cracking these Grains.. it is Easier for Young Birds and Chicken to Digest..

A Few Brands will Add Barley.. which Sinks like a Stone into the Mud..
It is Not Practical for Feeding by the Pond..

Two Grain Scratch
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Cracked Corn and Scratch are Difficult for Adult Swans to Eat..
They Loss about Half of it Trying to Swallow these Little Pieces..

We Stop Mixing Scratch into the Feed Mix of Cygnets by about 10-12 Weeks Old..
Mixing in Whole Corn which is SO Much Easier for Swans to Eat..

It this More Cost Effective to STOP Cracked Corn and Scratch for these LARGE Birds.

******************************************

I have Come Across a Few People who have Tried to Find a Lower Protein Food…
The Protein might be Lower, BUT they are NOT Appropriate Waterfowl/Swans.

Rabbit Pellets are for Rabbits ! !

Horse Feed is for Horses !!  NOT for WaterFowl.
Some Horse Feeds are Lower in Protein.
And they are TOO Low in Calories to Fiber Ratio.
Swans will Starve when Fed Horse Feed.

Swan Horse Feed
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

****************************************************
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THE FOLLOWING FEED MIX IS FOR Swans and Cygnets
at least 4-6 Months Old or Older.
********************
THERE IS NO COMMERCIAL BAG FEED in the United States 
that is Formulated for Swans.
You need to Mix for a Healthy Swan Diet.

THERE ARE REASONABLY SAFE BAG FEEDs
They will Need to be Mixed with Corn for Daily Use.

*** Always ask for “NON-MEDICATED /UNTREATED”
Commercial Feed & Corn   Very Important.
****************

MAZURI MAINTENANCE is a REASONABLY SAFE BAG FEED Mixed with Corn.
Currently Available Across the Country.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Keep the Lysine Level at 1.00% or Less.

FEED MAZURI Maintenance
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Chewy.com is a Great Way to Order and have Many Feed Products Delivered.
. . . with Orders of at Least $50.00 these will be Delivered Free.

This Saves Time and Gas.. Thanks Chewy !

Feeding Captive Swans

*** The Commercial Feed Mix we use is:   
NON-Medicated – Mazuri Floating Waterfowl Maintenance Pellets.
Mixed 40% Pellets with 60% Whole Shell Corn.

The Mazuri Formulation provides Vitamins, Minerals, Trace Elements, Etc.

Lysine Feed
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

MAZURI Waterfowl Pellets Float for Several Hours.. Great for Grazing.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

*** CORN is not a Complete Diet… It is a Supplement.

Commercial Bag Corn
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

AVIAN INFANTICIDE:
I have been Asking many of the Folks in my Swan Network what they are Feeding their Swans..
Over the Years, I Noticed a Common Fact… with 6-7 Pair of Breeding Swans.

The Swans that were Only Fed Cracked or Whole Corn during the Winter Months
were the Swans who were Killing their Tiny Cygnets. Equally the Dams and Sires.
Once the Diet was Improved the Next Nesting Season they did not Kill their Cygnets..

My Data Samples are TOO Small to be a Definite Correlation..
But, it is VERY Suggestive that the Poor Nutrient Diet is Related..

***********************************************

The Following can be added as a Treat: About 10%
Scratch Mixes – Cracked Corn, Wheat, Barley, Crimped Oats, Alfalfa, Rye Grass Seed.
Best Used is in a Shallow Pan of Water.. So the Swans can Suck-up these Small Pieces.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Whole Oats are Better for Horses..

Crimped Oats are made by taking Whole Oats and Partially Flattening them,
Damaging the Husk and making them Slightly Easier to Consume and Digest.

Feeding Captive Swans
Crimped Oats

Rolled Oats have been Completely Flattened and are Considered Easier to Digest.

Chickens, Ducks, Geese and Swans LOVE Crimped Oats.

( Adding a little Crimped Oats is a Floating Treat. )

I have Started to Add a Small Amount of Crimped Oats to the Corn tossed into the Water.
Some of it Floats and is Nice for the Swans to Graze.
This is Not Practical where a Current just Carries the Oats Away.

Crimped Oats Float
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

*************************************************

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

One Family Likes this “Feather Fixer” Feed.. Mixed with Corn to Lower the Protein.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

FOR Young Cygnets – NON-Medicated Start & Grow.
>>>>> ( OR Crumble – Specialty Poultry Feed) – NON-Medicated.

Cygnet START N Grow
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

*************************************

DO NOT FEED “CHICK STARTER” TO SWAN CYGNETs.
These Feeds Contain an Additive that will cause Chronic Diarrhea, Malabsorption
and the Death of many of the Cygnets.
This is Formulated to help Poultry Chicks deal with Coccidiosis.

Amprolium IS NOT an Antibiotic.
It is a Coccidia Preventitive for Chicks for their First 7-10 Days..

When Coccidia Parasites Ingest Amprolium, they Experience Thiamin Deficiency
and Starve from Malnutrition, it ALSO Causes Thiamine Deficiency in the Cygnets.
Thiamine Turns Food into Energy to Keep the Nervous System Healthy.
Tiny Cygnets are GROWING Very Fast..
Cygnets NEED to be Able to Absorb all Healthy Nutrients.

Cygnet START N Grow
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans Cygnets

**************************************

*** FOR SWANs and CYGNETs over 4-6 Months Old.
*** MIX Bag Feed so the Protein % is between 6-8%

60%       Whole Dry Shell Corn
40%      18% Waterfowl Floating Pellets
> > > ( OR 40% All Grain Poultry Feed Maintainer – Extrude).

Whichever you Choose – Mix to the Protein Level of ** 6-8% **

Feed Mix for Swans
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

The Protein Percentage of U.S. Poultry Feed is TOO HIGH for SWANs.

Duck, Geese, Turkeys all Tolerate Protein Levels Up to 15-20%
***Swans Average Daily Protein should NOT Exceed 6-8%.

Adjust the Feed Mix by Mixing Whole Dry Shell Corn or Scratch Mix for Young Cygnets.
Adding Lots of Vegetable-Plant Material Helps to Keep the Daily Protein Level Down.
Lettuce, Romaine, Dark Green Leaf Lettuce, Spinach, Cabbage (shredded), Chinese Cabbage,
Cucumbers, Kale, Shredded Carrots for Vitamin A, Chopped Radishes, Apples.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans  Vegetables

Young Swan Cygnets may Develop Tendon Slippage of the Carpal ( Wrist ) Joint
from a High Protein Diet.
 This May Result in “Angel Wing” Deformity.

SWAN Angel Wing Deformity
https://swanlovers.net/category/swan-angel-wing-deformity/

Swan Angel Wing 
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

A High Protein Diet will cause a Fatty Liver- Lipidosis to Develop.
May Damage the Swan’s Liver, Spleen, Kidneys, which will Eventually be Fatal.

Most Extruded Poultry Feeds Dissolve Sitting in Water.
It is More Efficient when Using these Products
to Place the Mixture in a Container/Bowl.

Bowl For Swan Feed
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Chickens and Swans are Poultry..
Chicken Poultry Feed is OK if Mixed with Whole Corn..

If Choosing POULTRY FEEDs >>>> MAINTENANCE
NO GROWERs – NO Finishers.. SWANs are Pets > NOT to Eat..

Welcome to Poultry DVM’s Feed Comparison Tool
Compare Nutrients of Different Poultry Feeds or Search for Specific Ingredients.
http://www.poultrydvm.com/feeds.php

Captive Black Australian Swans
Feeding Swans

**************************************************

Any Feed put out for Swans should be Checked and Changed Daily.

SWAN FRESH Daily Poultry Feeds
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

In the Summer Extrude Feed Spoils Very Easily if it Gets Wet.
Spoiled/Soured Feed Can Make a Swan VERY Sick.

Rainy Day Corn
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

If it is Going to Rain… We only put Whole Corn out.
In Cold Weather Spoiling is not as much a Problem.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Around Mid-January Consider Starting Feed Formulated for Egg Layers.
Mix a Cup into the Daily Feed Mixture Ration.

I Save my Hard Boiled Egg Shells.. and Crush them.
I Add a Teaspoon to a Gallon of Feed Mix.

Crushed Boiled Egg Shells
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

When I see White Calcium in their Poop, I know I have Added Enough.

SWAN POOP Excreted Calcium
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

Swan Poop Tells its own Story. Learn what Normal Swan Poop Looks like.
It varies GREATLY with their Diet.
Occasionally, look for Any Signs of Parasite.  Things that Wiggle !!
Watch for Persistent Wet Sloppy Waste – Diarrhea.  ???
There are MANY Possibilities.

Check with your Avian Veterinarian at Least Once a Year.
See if they will do a Stool Work-up for Ova & Parasites.
Sample needs to be Fresh. Their Lab will give you Instructions.

Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

*************************************************************************

Swans are Very Messy, Wasteful Eaters.
The Mazuri Floating Waterfowl Pellets have Less Waste.

*****************************************************

Swans NEED 30% More Food during Cold Weather Months.
If there is a Small Amount Left after 24 Hours,
or at End of the Day they are Getting Enough.

Feeding Winter Swans
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

***********************************************************************

Diet.. It is Helpful for Swans to have a Little Oil in their Diet..
Especially during the Winter Months.
Adding a Tablespoon of Salad Oil to their Daily Feed Mixture may be Helpful..

*************************************************************

Blackstrap Molasses is the most Concentrated Form of Molasses.
It Contains the most Vitamins and Assorted Minerals.
Some Sources say that it has many Health Benefits.

****************************************************

If your Swans Need Extra Vitamins to Improve their Healthy..

Gimbon Vionate – is a Vitamin Powder….
Needs to be used with a Dry Feed Mix… Not to give in Water.
To help this Powder Stick to the Feed.. Mix a little OIL or King Syrup
for the Vitamin Powder to Stick to…

***********************************************************************

This Information is a Work in Progress…..
As I learn more I will add to this information..
&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&
Compiled & Revised by (C) L.M.Sweger           .. NOVEMBER  2021

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Feeding Captive Swans

Now After ALL That…. Sit Back and Enjoy your Healthy Swans.

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50 Pounds – Mazuri Waterfowl Maintenance Averages $ 40-50.00
Mazuri Waterfowl Feed has been Popular with Swan Keepers for many Years.

Mazuri Waterfowl Feed


50 Pounds – Poultry Maintainer ( UnMedicated )

Feeds for Swans


Average ( Guesstimate ) Annual Usage of Commercial Feed for Two Adult Mute Swans
if they Graze off a Natural Summer Pond and Lush Green Grass.

1 – Bags of Poultry Maintainer
2 – Bags of Waterfowl Floating Pellets
1 – Bags of Scratch – Two Grain
1 – Bag of Crimped Oats
3 – Bags of Whole Shell Corn
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Addition Expenses if there are Cygnets in the Spring.
1-2 25 Pound Start-n-Grow for Cygnets
OR
1 – 50 Pound of Crumble for the Cygnets

Chewy.com is a Great Way to Order and have Many Feed Products Delivered.
. . . with Orders of at Least $50.00.

This Saves Time and Gas.. Thanks Chewy !

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Healthy Pinioned Cygnets 6-10 Months Old can be SOLD/ADOPTED for:
$100.00 to $150.00 to $200.00 to 300.00 to $350.00
Depends on Age – the Number and Sex Available for Sale.

Feeding Captive Swans

Just for Fun… I Tried to Mathematically Calculate the Amount of Feed for a Healthy Adult Swan.

Birds/Waterfowl should Eat about 25-30 Grams Feed Mix / Kg Body Weight each Day.

Conversion Tables: Kilograms to Pounds..
https://www.metric-conversions.org/weight/kilograms-to-pounds.htm

Conversion Tables: Kilograms/Grams to Pounds.
https://www.metric-conversions.org/weight/grams-to-kilograms.htm

EXAMPLE: (ONE) 1 SWAN Weighing appx.. 25 Pounds. ( a Healthy Pen )
(ONE) 1 Pound = 2.3 Kilograms
2.3 KG X 25 Pounds = 58 Kilograms.
58 Kilograms X 30 Grams Feed Mix = 1740 Grams.
1740 Grams Feed Mix = 1.75 Quarts of Feed..
1.75 Quarts of Feed = A Little less then 4 Pounds Feed Mix /Day.

It is Easier to Start with a Little Too Much Feed – Food..
Then Change the Daily Ration Until there is Just a Little Left at the End of the Day.

SWANLovers Info
Captive Mute Swans
Feeding Swans

I Found this List of Food Items to TOTALLY AVOID !

Feeding Captive Swans
Feeding Captive Swans
Feeding Captive Swans
Feeding Captive Swans
Feeding Captive Swans

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