Tuesday, February 11, 2014

A Search for a Black Swan

It is February of 2014 and the Hitty girls are having their first meeting for the year, although they have been together during the holidays doing activities amongst themselves.

Alana welcomes the girls to the meeting and suggests they need to be outside doing activities while the weather is so nice. Alana tells the girls that she and Annabelle biked to the river to look for the black swan that has been rumoured to be in this area. Annabelle has put her swan poster on the wall and talks about the habits of swans. Did you know black swans pair for life and both look after the ‘cygnets’? What is a group of cygnets called?  Answer a ‘clutch’.

Alana has brought an embroidered tray cloth of two black swans her grandmother made when she was a teenager to the meeting and it is passed around amongst the girls to look at.

Alana tells the girls it was a cool overcast day when she and Annabelle biked to the river to look for a black swan. It seemed an ideal day to see some birdlife.  Alana particularly wanted to see a black swan.  Annabelle likes swans and didn’t mind if she saw a black or white swans.

When we arrived at the river we left our bikes leaning against the hedge and walked down to the river edge. Two pukeko were scratching around by the hedge looking for food and they followed us to the river edge.

The river looked quiet and we started throwing some bread pieces into the river and ducks appeared from all directions.



We walked further along the river and stopped and threw some more bread pieces into the river and some swans came towards us.The swans were white but we saw a female swan on the river with cygnets on her back. “Aw,”the girls exclaim together, “How nice, wish we were with you.”
More white swans arrived.

  After we had been watching and admiring the swans for about fifteen minutes they heard a rustle amongst some shrubs and they saw a black swan come out and fly away. Well, they did see a black swan (right in photo) so it is not a rumour it is true that there is one in the area… maybe another black swan will come to the area in the future.Alana says she will go back to visit the area again in the future The other Hitty girls say they want to go to that area of the river to see the black swan.

Footnote: Alana and Annabelle went back to the river to the area they saw the black swan the following weekend without telling the other girls because they did not want to scare the swan away from the area. Annabelle took Alana’s photo.





  1. How wonderful that they got to see the black swan. I wonder if Hitty Madge will get to see a black swan when she is in NZ? She will certainly see some pukeko!

    1. I had a problem finding a black swan. I hope to find a better one. I am now on broadband so will be able to see more on your site!!! Looking forward to read about Hitty Madges holiday in NZ.