Eastern Iowa gains four trumpeter swans - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Eastern Iowa gains four trumpeter swans

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ATALISSA (KWWL) -

Eastern Iowa will soon see more swans.

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources reports four trumpeter swans soon will be released to the wild at Wiese Slough Wildlife Management Area in Atalissa.

Once uncommon in Iowa, by the early 1930s just 69 trumpeter swans remained in the entire United States. These birds are the largest waterfowl in North America. They can weigh up to 32 pounds, and can have a wingspan of eight feet.

In 1993, the Iowa restoration program began. In 2010, 42 wild pairs of trumpeter swans were counted living in Iowa. Wildlife workers estimate Iowa needs about 50 wild nests to guarantee a self-sustaining population.

The release begins at 6 p.m. July 19.

The swans' new home is a couple miles southeast of Atalissa.

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