It has been an unusually good year for Trumpeter Swans (but a poor year for irruptives). As a result, the opportunity has arisen to catch the trumpeters in less common situations. In this case, it was face-on activities.
Some of the Trumpeter Swans before they took to the air.
The trumpeter is the heaviest bird in North America. So unlike some lighter waterfowl, it cannot just spring into the air to start flying. It must run for 90 metres or more across the water to pick up speed. Here can be seen the separate splashes made by the alternate feet pushing against the water as it runs.
Two photographs in sequence show a Trumpeter Swan running across the water straight towards the photographer.
When flying, the feet are tucked up out of the airstream.
But when coming in for a landing the feet are lowered to provide drag to slow the bird.
At the last moment, the feet are rotated to provide a break on the water.