WWT - Wetlands for life

Annie, the abandoned Bewick’s swan

Annie (left hand bird in the image to the right), a Bewick’s swan cygnet, appears to have been abandoned by her parents at WWT Slimbridge Wetland Centre. Occasionally, cygnets become separated from their parents during the gruelling 2,500 mile migration back to Russia when there is perhaps bad weather but it is rather more unusual to see such a separation before the journey has begun.

Annie has latched onto Slimbridge regulars Wooton and Stinchcombe and their four cygnets, but is spending much of her time calling in the hope of being reunited with her own parents. Visitors to Slimbridge are really taking the cygnet to their hearts and we’re all waiting to see whether the parents return … however, they may not return at all.

We are keeping a close eye on Annie. There’s a chance she will migrate with the family she’s adopted. If so, we will call on our extensive network of swan researchers along the 2,500 mile journey to Russia to keep their eyes out for them and check whether the lone cygnet manages to stay with them.

However, if Annie does not attempt a migration and choose to remain here at Slimbridge we will support her by providing her with plenty of food and a safe-roost on the Rushy. 

Hundreds of wild Bewick’s swans return each winter to WWT Slimbridge Wetland Centre.  As well as getting food and a safe roost, they have given our researchers the unique opportunity to study them up close, helping us to protect them.

We always need your support. If you would like to help Bewick’s swans, please give whatever you can.

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Thanks to Giles Diggle for the swan footage used in this video.