Part of our business at Links Bridges deals with bridges for residential properties. One such case involved a gentleman in the mid-west who needed a bridge to connect to an island in the large pond in his front yard. One curious aspect was that he needed the bridge to be arched so his swans could comfortably swim under the bridge.
We were pleased to be able to accommodate this request but our curiosity was piqued as well. You don’t meet someone every day who has pet swans. We found the story about the swans both interesting and instructive.
Apparently, in this area there are business from which you can rent swans for the spring to fall seasons. The swans are usually delivered in ‘couples’ with the expectation that they may mate during this time.
These swans have been ‘clipped’ so that they are not able to fly and are quite content as long as they have a body of water, a food supply and are not threatened by predators.
What was particularly interesting was to learn that the motivation for people to rent swans is to keep geese away. This may be widely known but it was new for us – apparently swans will not tolerate geese in their ‘territory’ and are capable of inflicting ‘death by drowning’ to a goose that tries to co-habit their pond.
We have seen a number golf courses where goose populations were a menace. As we see those places in the future, we will be certainly be letting them know about the potential remedy of introducing some elegant swans to the property.
Like all of our bridge stories, this one has a happy ending. The bridge was delivered and installed. In the picture below you can see Mr. Swan contentedly emerging from a swim under the bridge. This bridge is a typical ‘Woody’ model done in a weathered wood finish.