basic information

Whooper Swan

Cygnus cygnus (Linnaeus, 1758)

Лебедь-кликун | Сұңқылдақ аққу

Zharasbay, Karaganda province
© Ruslan Urazaliyev


Breeds in northern half of Kazakhstan; south to lower reaches of Turgay river and Balkhash-Alakol depression; sometimes lives in deltas Ili and Lepsy, on Sasykkol lake and on Markakol lake. Isolated breeding is known at Tekesskiy reservoir in Central Tien Shan. On migration occurs everywhere throughout plains of Kazakhstan. Winters on Northern Caspian Sea, sometimes to the south of Turkestan and Shymkent, in recent years on Sorbulak lake.


Common breeding migrant. Inhabits large fresh and slightly salty lakes with vast reed beds. Appears very early, when lakes not yet free from ice, mid – end February or early March in southern areas, and in early – end April in central and northern ones. Migrates in small flocks, rarely more than 50 birds. At breeding sites they arrive in pairs and don’t nest close to one another. A large nest is built among reed and mace beds and constructed from dry stems of reed and other vegetation. Inner cup lined with dry stems of reed, mace and sedge. Clutches of 3-7, more often of 4-6 eggs in early April – end May. Only female incubates 35-40 days. Juveniles hatch mid-May – June. Both parents rear juveniles. Autumn migration from end August to end October – early December.


Gavrilov E. I., Gavrilov A. E. "The Birds of Kazakhstan". Almaty, 2005. Э.И.Гаврилов. "Фауна и распространение птиц Казахстана". Алматы, 1999. В.К.Рябицев. "Птицы Урала, Приуралья и Западной Сибири". Екатеринбург. Изд-во Уральского университета, 2000.


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