Swimming slowly upstream, against the flow of the river, the swans must be paddling hard.
When they turn and go with the flow they glide effortlessly downstream.
A few birds in the Berwick flock are still showing the mottled brown of juvenile plumage…
but most of last year’s young birds are now dazzling white.
The large mute swan colony that assembles at Berwick upon Tweed each winter is starting to disperse for the breeding season. According to the records of the Berwick Swan and Wildlife Trust up to 800 birds gather to moult and overwinter in the rich feeding grounds of the estuary each year. In the spring most head upstream or fly overland to scattered nesting sites, returning with their young later in the year.