3 Feb 2023 Trumpeter Swans at Reclamation Rd. Rice fields in Lake County

Dave Bengston

Yesterday, I walked in from a private ranch on Hwy 20 to the Reclamation Rd. rice fields. I was on the levee of Rodman Slough, at the extreme west side of the fields, when I saw two swans over in the rice fields. It was such a distance that I could not tell what they were and I did not have a scope so I assumed that they were Tundra Swans. I took photos, but I did not look at them until today. They looked like Trumpeter Swans! They had long black straight bills on the top (culmen), and the bill blended right into the eye, so the eye did not appear to be separate, like for a Tundra Swan. They also did not have any yellow at the base of the bill. They appeared huge, but there were no geese or ducks nearby for comparison. They had very long strong looking necks. The time was about 12:30 pm.

If anyone tries to go see them, I recommend driving in on Reclamation Road and hiking around the perimeter to the west side and looking back to the east. The middle of the fields have quite a bit of water. The ranch side that I hiked in on is private property and was over a two mile walk, so don’t do that. I walked the entire perimeter, so I know its passable on all sides.

Sorry for such late notice.

Dave Bengston