Iconic Palace of Fine Arts swans temporarily relocated after one falls ill

Aaron Maizlish

There is an article on SFGate tonight about the two Mute Swans that live in the lagoon at the Palace of Fine Arts.  One has fallen ill and they have been relocated to SF Zoo.  So sorry San Francisco birders, if you wanted these non-countable Mute Swans for your year-list, its too late.   

Anyway I had no idea that these are celebrity birds with names Blanche and Blue Boy and hordes of fans.  I guess I should have figured.   The article provides some nice back story.   

For those of you who dont know, Mute Swans are native to Eurasia and are an introduced species in North America.  They have successfully established themselves across much of the Eastern U.S. where they are generally accepted as a permanent “countable” introduced species.  There has been a growing population of Mute Swans for the past few decades in the North Bay marshes - but these are not considered to be countable partly because there have been plans in the past to reduce or remove the population, though that has not come to pass.

It sounds from the article that the Palace of Fine Arts birds are not from any wild population, but have been brought here and managed by SF Parks and Rec over the years.

Heres the article:  

Aaron Maizlish
San Francisco, CA