Trumpeting spring in the Fenway, now overrun by tree-killing rabbits

Swan in the Fens

Masstreehugger photographs the latest addition to the Fens, wonders how he or she will get along with the Canada geese, and adds:

Note in foreground the stripped bark off the trees leaning over the water - courtesy of recent rabbit infestation in the park. They eat bark in order to survive winter, effectively killing the plant although it may resprout from roots. There will be lots of dead wood all over the park this year.



    Free tagging: 


    Opened yourself right up for this one

    By on

    There will be lots of dead wood all over the park this year.

    That's not the only kind of "wood" that will appear all over this park this year....

    *raises and lowers his eye brows fast* *snicker*

    (as I've often been quoted as saying on here... the fens is known as a 'pickle park' aka a place where gay men go to meet other gay men for... well you can figure out what 'pickle park' means)

    I'll leave the "rabbit" joke (aka "F**kin like rabbits") for someone else...


    That swan has been there for

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    That swan has been there for months. He(?) was aggressive toward the other waterfowl at first and has since mellowed out.


    A real shame

    Thank heavens. It would be a real shame if the swan scared off a sizable chunk of the geese.

    < / sarcasm >


    Geese aren't afraid of cars.

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    Geese aren't afraid of cars. Why would they be afraid of what is essentially a bigger white goose?


    Careful what you wish for

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    This is a Mute Swan, the only swan we regularly get around here (not a native Trumpeter Swan as Adam implies, which are extremely rare in New England). They were introduced from Europe to beautify people's estates and have since escaped captivity to become a notorious pest - they're very aggressive against other wildlife and humans (and that's no joke - people have been killed by territorial swans) and absolutely devastate whatever habitat they end up in. If Swans get established around here, trust me, you'll miss the geese.

    (note that the pair of Mute Swans in the Public Garden are both female so they can't breed and have their wings clipped so they can't escape - the city puts them up at the Franklin Park Zoo over the winter and trucks them back to the Garden in May).


    The male swans are called 'cobs'.

    By on the UK as I learned from a google plus friend there.

    The swan incursion readily dwarfs the turkey trotting laying waste to our sense of urbanity.

    There is an aggressive cob over in the pond next to Alewife station and I got to watch it intimidate A Canada goose on Saturday.

    They are kind of dangerous as the wings are powerful.

    The rabbit problem is more stealthy, creeping under the turkey radars while wearing down the limited cadre of hawks available to 'cull' them.

    I spotted coyote tracks over by the barren wastes behind Brick Bottom this winter so they may pitch in for a rabbit repelling engagement.

    At some point, when the rabbits are confident about their numbers, a major bunny blitz will be unleashed to drive the turkeys into the sea.

    It will be a Pyrrhic victory and geese will roam the desolate battlefields to the accompaniment of triumphal honks and squirrels will scheme new ways to cheat the rats and pigeons.



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    are pretty bad ass. You don't want to F with them.


    My office has a swan pond,

    My office has a swan pond, and I pretty regularly see customers approach the swans to try to feed or pet them. Especially during nesting season, this does not go over well. Mr. Swan attacks without mercy.


    Last Summer there was a swan

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    Last Summer there was a swan that pretty much lived at the YC I belong to, pretty friendly. Would hang around the boats waiting to be fed and would eat out of your hand.
    I certainly wouldn't go around trying to hand feed "stranger" swans, this one was special.


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    Swan stuffed with a goose stuffed with a rabbit. Yum. A little gamey, maybe a little wormy. A parasite or two. Eat like a king.


    Yay swans

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    For a couple of days a pair of swans, probably this pair, was hanging out in the Charles near the MIT boathouse. I admit that part of me was hoping they'd stick around and nest for the sheer spectacle of the swan-vs-crew boat confrontations.