Creates wetland habitats on public and private lands near the Green River. This project provides much needed habitat through the creation of 20 acres of wetland area, including a pond.
Synopsis: This project will enhance swan habitat by creating 5-6 acres of additional shallow water foraging/nesting habitat adjacent to the New Fork River, and create nesting islands on the existing ranch reservoir.
Introduction: Trumpeter Swans require shallow-water wetlands that produce extensive,
luxuriant, and diverse stands of submerged aquatic vegetation. These kinds of wetlands,
with some recognized physical and biological characteristics, fulfill functions important
for swans of all age classes. The following information was developed based on data and
publications from past investigations and the collective knowledge of three biologists
(Dave Lockman, Dan Stevenson, and Susan Patla) who have intensively studied swans
and their habitats for the Wyoming Game & Fish Department in Wyoming from 1981-
2004. We have compiled this information for use by private landowners, wetland
construction contractors, biologists, land trusts, and land managers for the planning,
construction, improvement, and management of wetlands for spring through fall use by
Trumpeter Swans. If these considerations and prescriptions are utilized in the design and
construction of shallow-water wetlands, we anticipate a high probability of use either by
adult swans for nesting and production, by molting sub-adults during mid-summer, by
paired adults prior to the nesting period, or by migrating swans in the spring or fall
seasons. Shallow water wetlands are crucial for sustaining the local resident flock
between ice-off and ice-on (late March-late November). Because of the unique security
and aquatic food needs of adult and young swans, summer flock size may be currently
limited by lack of habitat with the physical and biological characteristics capable of
sustaining nesting adults and producing cygnets to flight. We predict that the resident
flock size will increase slowly if productive, suitable habitat increases in availability and
dispersion; and local swan production and recruitment increases. Wetland habitats
designed with trumpeter swans in mind will accommodate many other waterfowl, water
birds, and numerous other wildlife species associated with aquatic and riparian habitats in
1) Four wetland ponds (total 19 acres) were constructed on the Rimfire Ranch near Daniel, WY in fall 2008. Ponds were filled in 2009. Because of complex water flow/soil conditions not adequately considered in the initial design plan, construction modifications are still being made to obtain optimal function on the two ponds constructed near Soaphole Creek (Sago and Trumpeter Ponds). Rip rap and culvert work will need to be completed in fall 2010.
2) Another pond of approximately 5-6 acres has been planned and will be constructed in fall 2010 on the Swift Ranch near Boulder, WY. Environmental analysis and permitting has been completed.