Photo by Lowell Washburn

Trumpeter Swans Flourish in Shallow Lakes of Iowa

The fall and rise of trumpeter swans in North America is an amazing story – nearly wiped out by settlers crossing the country, turning virgin prairie and wetlands into farmsteads and farm fields. These settlers exported more than 100,000 trumpeters between 1880-1920 to use in products like quill pens, powder puffs, pillows, quilts and hats. The swans’ meat and eggs were consumed as part of the pioneer diet.