Swans: a love story part 5 by danapommet ()
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Tonight’s posting is the last good photo I have of the remaining trio.
As you can see, winter has arrived at the salt marsh. Fred has finished his flying lessons and driven off the six healthy young swans. Drifty still has no interest in learning how to fly at all. I had not realized it before but the mash is spring fed, over in one corner. The warmer water, from the spring, is keeping a small section from freezing. But the colder it gets - the smaller this section of open water becomes. The bad news is that the water over there is deeper than the rest of the marsh and the swans can no longer forage, for roots and things to eat, off the bottom. It appears that I am their last source of food.
I’ve been able to frisbee slices of whole wheat bread out to them but the ducks are beginning to hang around for the bread. Fred is very busy chasing off the ducks so Edwina and Drifty can get their share. She gets her share but Drifty is clueless and not eating enough to stay healthy. My fear is that Fred is expending so much energy, chasing ducks, and not getting enough to eat. I’ve begun to put a bucket of cracked corn near the edge but only the ducks are interested. At least, while the ducks are at the bucket, Fred is getting more bread. I’m over there on the way to work, my lunch hour and on the way home. As the days grow shorter, it is darker in the mornings and evenings and the open water area is still getting smaller.
Then Edwina was gone and my heart was broken. Saturday afternoon, an elderly couple told me that they had watched Fred drive Edwina from the marsh. That made me feel better but there are still two left. The ice was now getting thicker and I invested in the largest pair of ‘bear claw’ snowshoes that I could find. I tried to rescue Drifty and that didn’t work. After that Fred went into pretending to bite me and wouldn’t let me near Drifty. The open water area was getting smaller and some days was slushing over.
Then came the day that the marsh had frozen over and sitting in the middle of the ice, was Fred. No sign of Drifty - I walked the entire shoreline and there were no remains. I went out onto the ice and whistled for Fred, he came over, ate a half loaf of bread, did some pretend biting and wandered back out to the center of the ice and just sat there………
Thanks for stopping by, taking a look and for all your previous comments & favs.
Image Comments (28)
MrsLubner () 10:14PM | Fri, 17 July 2009
softely introduced with the conclusion of this tale. Wonderful story in photos.
Digitaleagle () 12:22AM | Sat, 18 July 2009
What an excellent story to go with the image my heart rose and sank with each sentence, good luck with Fred and hope the others are OK. Such a wonderful capture very nicely done!!!
Meisiekind () 2:19AM | Sat, 18 July 2009
I was so behind on comments so when I saw this image, I had to go back! What a wonderful image story Dana! Absolutely wonderful! This image - spectacular!!! Bravo on some great work my friend! :)
BessieB () 3:42AM | Sat, 18 July 2009
A lovely shot, I have followed your story with hope and now slight dispair though I am sure all will be well. You are a good man Dana
Richardphotos () Online Now! 6:49AM | Sat, 18 July 2009
surprising that you have names for all. very interesting story and superb capture
CavalierLady () 11:18AM | Sat, 18 July 2009
What a gripping series this has been! Wonder if anyone ever saw Drifty again? Thanks for sharing this interesting series with us, Dana!
tennesseecowgirl () 3:43PM | Sat, 18 July 2009
I appreciate the time you put into this, and really enjoyed the story and photos. I may go back to the area where I came across some Swans recently and try again to get some shots. But wow they are pretty aggresive birds, for being so beautiful. They had me scared.
lucindawind () 3:47PM | Sat, 18 July 2009
a beautiful photo ...and a sad story of these lovely swans
elfin14doaks () 4:58PM | Sat, 18 July 2009
Hopefully all is well for Edwina, Drifty and Fred. Great capture.