A swan family became local celebrities at the Charles River Esplanade in Boston after seven babies were born.
Unfortunately, they were struck with tragedy and the father swan was left as a single dad just a week after the birth of his children.
Usually, swan couples, who mate for life, share their parental duties within the first few weeks of their child’s life.
They would take turns in feeding, protecting and keeping them warm, but unfortunately, in this case, the mother fell ill and passed away just a week into the birth.
“She was resting, sheltering her cygnets like the great mom she’s been for the past week. But she couldn’t lift and hold up her head. She stumbled when she stood, couldn’t swim straight and whatever she did, she only propelled herself backwards,” said Zarco, an onlooker.
“Dad wouldn’t leave her. When the cygnets went for a swim, you could see how torn he was between staying with and encouraging his mate and protecting their young.”
“By the time Boston Animal Control (thank you Brad) could come to her aid, she had already died,” Zarco added. “But Dad must have known that already for even though he sat across the lagoon from where she lay, every time before when it looked like someone or something was endangering her.”
“He’d charge across the water to fiercely protect her. But when Brad approached her, picked her up out of the water, wrapped her gently in a blanket, Dad did not move. He calmly sat at the nest with their cygnets safely tucked under his wings.”
A veterinarian from Boston examined the mother and wasn’t able to decipher the cause of death.
“The swan’s death broke many of the hearts of the community here in Boston, where we see people visiting the swans’ nest on a daily basis — it’s become part of their daily routine.”
Without his mate, the male had to step up and do everything he can to successfully raise his children as a single father.
“They seem to be doing well. You can spot them in the esplanade lagoon swimming together, with some of the babies riding along on his back.”
“Geese will swim by them and you can tell that the papa swan is in full force, protecting the cygnets. You can tell that he’s just a great, great father to them. It’s very adorable.”
Thanks to their very loving and caring dad, it looks like the seven children will have a great chance at growing into successful adults.
For now, though, the dad must take it one day at a time.