> Frequently Asked Questions
> Skagit Valley
> Johnson / DeBay Swan Reserve
> Guidelines for Swan Watching
WHAT IS THE BEST TIME TO VIEW SWANS IN WASHINGTON?
Trumpeter and Tundra Swans that winter in western Washington spend the summer in Alaska, northern British Columbia, and the Yukon Territory in Canada. They begin to migrate south in mid to late October. The best time for viewing is from mid-December through the end of February when the wintering birds are here.
WHERE ARE SOME GOOD PLACES TO VIEW SWANS?
The largest concentrations of wintering Trumpeter Swans in the lower 48 states are found in the Skagit Valley near Mount Vernon. Both Tundra and Trumpeter Swans occur here. The winter swan population is approximately 8,400 in Skagit County, 2,100 in Whatcom County, 1,200 in Snohomish County and less than 70 in the San Juan Islands.
The swans in much of western Washington are heavily dependent on agricultural lands, especially dairy farms. They feed on after-harvest crops of potatoes, corn grown for dairy cattle feed, winter wheat/rye, and pasture grass.