Swan question - tag (or clip?) the wings


10 Years
Jan 8, 2010
A friend has swans and asked me what to do, but I only know chickens. She has a pair of swans that hatched babies this year and doesn't want them to fly away.

Someone told her to "tag the wings"

Is this the same as clipping flight feathers in chickens? Or is there something else swan-specific that needs to be done?

Any advice would be much appreciated!
Most people with swans pinion the cygnets one wing, which is to remove part of the wing right underneath the "thumb" feather. This removes the flight feathers on one wing. This prevents them from flying. Clipping wings on swans is fine as babies, but once adults they can be hard to catch and keep up with the clipping. Some breeds of swan get into the wild population and cause trouble with the environment because the have not been pinioned or kept up the wing clipping.

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