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REPLACEMENT EGGs for Your Nesting Swans.

March 26th, 2019 | Posted by LadyNerkle1 in SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs
SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

AND > Basic Procedure to Swap-Out Eggs when Needed.

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Over the Various Swan Nesting Seasons that we have Expericened,
there have been a Number of Times having Replacement Eggs has been Helpful.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

If there is No Cob/Male to Fertilze a Pen/Female’s Eggs:

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Healthy Swan Pens/Females Mature by Age Three and will Nest
and Lay Eggs with or without a Male/Mate.

  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs
SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

When Swan Eggs are NOT Fertile, they will often start to
Rot and SMELL TERRIBLE before they can be Removed from the Nest.

(42 Days AFTER the Pen is “Sitting” Full-Time to Prevent Recyling. )

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

There are Nest Raiders.. Likely Raccoons Stealing Eggs.
Some Times People..

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Heavy Spring Rain may Soak and Spoil Eggs.
The Eggs Turn Blue once they are Too Wet..
Many Times the Developing Embryos will Drown.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

When the Female is not Ready to “Sit” Full-Time in Early Spring,
while still Laying her Clutch, a very Frosty Night may Freeze the Eggs. Little Chance these will Hatch.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

If for any Given Year, you want to Prevent Eggs Hatching.
Maybe you do not want to Deal with Cygnets.. Lots of Work.
The Eggs can be Spoiled by Spraying or Oiling..

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

OR you can Replace the Real Eggs with Life Like Replacements.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

In States where there are “Permit” Mute Swans,
the State Policy may NOT Allow their Eggs to Hatch.

  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

If your Swan Pair are from the Same Brood and you Determine it is more Responsible to Prevent their Eggs Hatching. Often Young Swans are Acquired from the Same Parent Swans.. Reducing Genetic Diversity.

We Rescued these Young Cygnets. Male and a Female Nest Mates.
It would have been Easy to find them a Home Together.
To Prevent Inbreeding, we Arrange Different Forever Homes.

 SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

OR as in the Example Below: The Mature Pen Died.
The Cob Bonded with his Female Offspring.. ( His Daughter ).
The Owners decided to Rehome them to Different Homes after they had been Mating and Nesting. Their Eggs were Not Allowed to Hatch.

Now they are Both with Unrelated Mates for Healthier Cygnets.

Having Replacement Eggs can be VERY Handy..
Use them – then Wipe them off and Store for Future Years.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

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 SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

My First Swan Egg Replacements were:
The UnHatched-Unfertile Mute Swan Eggs that I Drained and Filled with “Great Stuff” Foam. These were a Little Light Weight.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

I Painted a Sorta Feather over the Plugged Hole. To Sorta Hide the Spot.

  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

All but One Real-Filled Eggs was Accepted by our Nesting Pens.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

TO my Disappointment, a Raccoon started to Steal my Real Replacement Eggs and Crewed them into Pieces.. DARN.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

My Next Plan: WOODEN Eggs..
I Called a WoodCrafter Store. Explained I wanted to have Large Eggs
Turned. They were Happy to Help.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

I took a Gentleman One of my Real Eggs for the Template.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Below are the Measurement of an Average Size Mute Swan Egg.
The Craftsman did a GREAT Job. Now it is Up to Me to Paint & Seal them.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

He used Heavy Dense Wood.. BIRCH. The Weight is Pretty Good.
Birch wood is a Hardwood that is Extremely Strong.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

The WoodCraftsman advised me on the most Durable UnderCoat Sealer
and the Outer Finish Product for Outside Wood Items.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

For the Mute Swan Egg Colors I used the Small Bottles of Acrylic Craft Paints to Tint the Sealer.

The Colors will Vary with the Different Species of Swans.
The Color Samples below are from Regular House Paint Color Samples.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

These Files Show the Colors I tried to Match in Craft Acrylic Paints.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs
SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

First Step..
Sand the Bare Eggs until all Rough Spots are Gone.
Wipe Away any Dust.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Coat with a Good Quality Primer – Sealer.. White
Interior/Exterior Water Base Primer.. Coat – Dry – Sand.
White Coat AGAIN – DRY WELL..

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

I Used the Little Take Home Container Lids to Keep the Eggs from Rolling.

  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

I Added Acrylic Craft Color to Tint an Aliquote of the Sealer.
( NOT Entire Can. ) BASE Color Coat Twice..

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs
SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs
  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Time to “Stain” the Eggs. Using Medium Brown Craft Paint.

Dilute the Color until it will Stripe and Smear on the Egg.
I had to Wet my Hands to Coat the Entire Egg with Uneven Coloring.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Then WIPE Dry with a Paper Towel to Remove MOST Paint.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

It should have an Uneven Mottled Pattern.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

There is a Fluff of Small Feathers in the Swan’s Nest to Cushion the Eggs.
“Feathering the Nest.”

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs
  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

I Painted to Small SemiPlume Feather on One End..
To be Sure Which are REAL Which are Wooden.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Once the Eggs are VERY Dry, I Completely Coated Three Times
with the SATIN Exterior Seal & Protect Finish. DRY Well.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

The Satin Finish was too Glossy.. On a Very Damp Terry Cloth,
I Generously Sprinkled Fine Grit Bon-Ami & Coarser Ajax Scouring Powder.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Generally Rubbing-Buffing all over until the Eggs had the Same Dull Surface as the Real Mute Swan Eggs.

  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

RINSE Well, Dry Immediately. Dry Well before Storing.

After using in a Spring Nest, DO NOT SOAK IN WATER.
Wipe with Soapy Water, Rinse, Dry Well. Store for Next Year.

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How to SWAP-OUT Swan Replacement Eggs.

IF your Goal is to Prevent ALL EGGs Hatching.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

NOTE: When the Swan Pen Starts to “Sit” Full-Time.
Mark Your Calendar. She Needs to “Sit” for 42 Days.

OR IF she Abandon her Eggs on her own. Then Watch for Recycling.

Wait Until the Female/Pen is “Sitting” Full-Time for at least a Week
To Ensure she is Truly Finished Laying..

  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Be Sure it is the Pen at the Nest “Sitting” Full-Time.
Most Cobs will Sit with the Clutch as it is being Laid.
For a Clutch of 5 Eggs it will take 9 Days. For 8 Eggs 15 Days.

  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

He will Protect the Eggs, but he CAN NOT Incubate them.
Only the Pen can Incubate the Eggs… ALL Eggs at the Same Time.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

During the 8 to 17 Days the Female is Laying her Eggs, she is EATING.
NOT “SITTING !! “

  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs
  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs
  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Fertile Mute Swan Eggs SHOULD Hatch on Day 37 Plus – Minus 1 Day.

  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

It is an Interesting Time. But, a Lot Like Watching Paint Dry.
The Pen will hardly Eat during this Time…
Quick Breaks on the Pond to Drink and Relieve herself. Average 6 Minutes.
Most Cobs will Watch the Nest during this Time. Not All.

If the Eggs are Fertile on Day 35 the Cygnets inside the Shell start to Wiggle.
The Pen will be OFF and ON the Nest Frequently.. STARTING to EAT !
The Pen’s Hungry Behavior is a VISUAL SIGNAL Hatching is about to Happen.
The Cygnets are Pipping. IF you can safely get Close you can hear them.

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If the Eggs are Spoiled or Replaced, the Pen will not have this Signal.
She will continue to “Sit.” If the Eggs are not Removed some Pens Starve to Death. It is for her Health and Safety, REMOVE all Eggs at 42 Days.

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Arrange for 3 People to Help with this Project.
Supplies.. One or Two Large Nets.. Maybe a Large Towel..

  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

A Bucket Lined with Two Plastic Grocery Bags.

Working Together this will only take a few Minutes.

FIRST: Contain the Male..
Either keep him at a Safe Distance across the Pond.
OR when he come up to the Nest AFTER YOU – Net him.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs
  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

SECOND: Net the Pen Or Wrap her with a Large Towel.
Move her off to the Side. Try NOT to Scare Her.
OR Encourage the Pen off her Nest and into the Pond.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

I use a Lawn Chair to Encourage the Female off her Nest.
Turned Around this Also Protects me from being Whacked.

IF there are 5-8 Eggs:

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Check for any Cracked or Smelly Eggs that are Attracting Flies.
Remove these first.

  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

This Female became VERY Sick from Eating the Pesty Flies.
She died Nine Days after Hatching her Only Cygnet. Then it Disappeared.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Remove ALL but Two Real Eggs that are OK.

  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Place only THREE Wooden Replacement Eggs in the Nest.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs
  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Release the Pen. Then Release the Cob. Check the Swans are OK..
Someone Watch that the Pen goes back on the Nest and Tends
to the Eggs in her Nest. That she Accepts the Replacements.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

If any of the Removed REAL Eggs are Cracked or SMELL Nasty
– DISCARD THEM.
Rotting Eggs may Explode !! ( Gas PRESSURE )
– KEEP in Plastic Bags.

I had ONE Stinky Egg that I placed in the Bucket Bags.
Put the Replacement Eggs in the Nest. Stood Up.
Picked up my Bucket. BOOM !!!
ONE Egg was that Close to Exploding under our Pen.

  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

&&&&&&&&&&& TURN CARD OVER… MORE INSTRUCTIONs.

SIDE 2 of INSTRUCTIONs.

THE NEXT Day: Do a Basic Check from a Safe Distance
that the Swans are still in Normal Nesting Behavior Mode.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

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ONE Week Later..
Repeat: Remove the Remaining Real Eggs.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

DO NOT Add any more Replacements.
UNLESS there are Eggs Missing.. !!!!

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Swan Pens frequently Lose Eggs during the Nesting Season.
They need several Eggs ( Two or Three) to “Sit” on
for the 42 Days to Prevent Recycling.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

KEEP the Extra Wooden Replacement Eggs as Spares.
There may be some Losses over Time by Raccoons or People..

  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

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ON Day 42 – Remove ALL Eggs from the Nest.
This way the Pen will Start to Eat Again..Avoid Starvation.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Wipe Replacement Eggs with Soapy Water on a Terry Cloth.
DO NOT Soak Wooden Eggs. Rinse, DRY Well.
Store for Next Year. Remember WHERE they ARE !

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

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The Winter Months are a Good Time to be Crafty
and Make Replacement Eggs.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs
  SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

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REPLACEMENT EGGs Painted over the Winter..
Information March 2019 (c) SwanLover Linda M.Sweger
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An Example of a Replacement Egg Swap-Out.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Take a Few Minutes to Observe the Nesting Swans..
Walk Slowly – Get Closer a Little at a Time..

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

It is Typical for the Cob to be Patrolling Near the Nest Site.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

This will be the Pen’s Fourth Spring to Nest. She is Dedicated to her Eggs.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs
SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Our Helpers were in Place, Ready to Start this Swap-Out.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

I Walked BETWEEN the Nest and the Pond
to see if the Cob would come out to Protect his Female.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Giving the Cob a Little Space to Come up to the Lawn-Nest Area.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

So Sweet, the Cob goes to Make Sure his Female is Safe.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs
SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Now it is TIME for him to CHASE Us OFF.. So Predictable.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

The Cob was EASY to Net. He came Directly to Us. OOPs !!

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Be Sure the Net Hoop is Securely on the Ground.
Swans are Good at Wiggling out UNDER any Open Spot .
Check his Neck is Not Twisted and he is Breathing OK.

We Slowly Move the Pen off the Nest with a Lawn Chair.
Do this Slowly, give her Time to Stand-up and Move Away.

The Nest contained a Large Clutch of 8 Eggs.
Working Quickly, I did not Snap Photos that were Focused. DARN !!
The Clutch below is an Example from a Nest in 2017 !!

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

We Removed 5 Real Swan Eggs and Placed 3 Replacements in the Nest.

SWAN REPLACEMENT Egg

SNAPPING One last Photo….
We Stepped back so the Pen could Return to her Nest.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

These Image Tell the Story.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs
SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

The Cob was Release and Went back to the Pond.
We Watched for about 5 Minutes.
The Pen Settled Down on the Nest.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

This Mute Swan Pen will Need to Sit on the Nest for 4 more Weeks.

In One Week the Remaining REAL Eggs will be Removed.
She will Continue to “Sit” on the Three Replacement Eggs.
She will Accept them as hers. They will Smell like her and the Nest.

SWAN REPLACEMENT EGGs

Swan of Beauty, Swan of Grace.
A Queen among her Ancient Race.

The Swan – by Susa Morgan Black.

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