Tuesday, 6 January 2015


I have been told about large numbers of swans in the fields in the Mablethorpe and Huttoft areas. These birds are Whooper swans that have come down from Iceland. The key difference in identity between our Mute swans and the winter visitor Whooper swans is the colour of the beak. Adult Mutes are orange whilst adult Whooper swans are yellow. The two species are about the same size as the photograph that I took at Mistley walls in Essex a few years ago shows. There are Canada geese and Black-headed gulls in the background. R W

Migration routes of 35 Whooper Swans tracked from the UK to Iceland from WWT Wetland Centres at Welney (red lines), Martin Mere (blue lines) and Caerlaverock (green lines)

This diagram is from a Scottish Government Habitats Appraisal Document


  1. How do you tell a black-headed gull when it hasn't got a black head?
    It still has a black spot behind its eyes.

  2. because their heads are brown?

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