‘Lonely’ swan left behind at RSPB reserve soon to be reunited with its ‘family’

The lonely whooper swan at RSPB Frampton Marsh. Photos by Neil Smith.
The lonely whooper swan at RSPB Frampton Marsh. Photos by Neil Smith.

A ‘lonely’ swan has been attracting attention at RSPB Frampton Marsh after it was left behind when its own kind returned to Iceland.

The solo whooper swan has been waiting for months for its ‘family and friends’ to return to the popular nature site - but its long wait is soon to be over.

The swan is awaiting the return of its 'friends' at RSPB Frampton marsh. Photo by Neil Smith.

The swan is awaiting the return of its 'friends' at RSPB Frampton marsh. Photo by Neil Smith.

Chris Andrews, visitor experience manager for the reserve, explained: “The poor lonely swan has been a feature of the nature reserve over the summer, as it patiently waits for its friends to return. It came as part of a group to the reserve last winter. But while the other swans returned to their breeding grounds in Iceland in the spring, one lone bird was left behind. It looks like the lonely swan had a damaged wing and so could not make the long and arduous journey North. It has since been patiently waiting for the other birds to return. This they should do sometime over the next few weeks.”

Whooper swans are the same size as our more familiar mute swans, which live in Lincolnshire all year round. The two birds can be told apart by the colour of their bills. Mute swans have an orange bill, whooper swans have a black and yellow one. Whooper swans arrive in October and stay the winter, grazing on local fields, before returning to Iceland in March.

Mr Andrews added: “Frampton Marsh is such a wonderful place for wildlife though that it seems quite happy to stay here. It has even been making friends with a local mute swan. In the meantime it has also been of much interest to birdwatchers, who have been coming to see it, and all the other wonderful wildlife we have.”