Killing Mute Swans? Shameful.

All over the United States, mute swans have been the victims of unnecessary killing just for doing what is natural to them – living, and eating vegetation to survive...

The beautiful mute swan, known for its graceful white body and distinctive orange/red bill, is found up and down the eastern sea board and in areas as far west as Montana and Utah. However, it is still disputed whether mute swans are native to the United States or if they were introduced in the 1800s.  Either way, free-ranging swans are now a naturalized, not to mention beautiful, part of our environment. There is no evidence that swans are responsible for meaningful environmental alteration. In fact, it is more likely that they are being used as a scapegoat for our political failure to deal with environmental problems such as water pollution and toxic runoff. We must learn to live with our naturalized wildlife --native and non-native alike--and stop trying to recreate a world that can no longer exist. Brutal and unnecessary killing of mute swans is not a substitute for the humane and enlightened management that these magnificent animals deserve.

Even Slash, famous guitarist from Guns N' Roses, and Nigel Barker, world-renowned photographer, have spoken out against this unnecessary slaughter.


DECEMBER 7th 2014

Assemblyman Cymbrowitz’ Mute Swan Bill Heading to Governor Cuomo for Action

The mute swan bill (A.8790A) introduced by Assemblyman Steven Cymbrowitz (D-Brooklyn) is being delivered to Governor Cuomo today -- and the lawmaker is urging animal rights advocates to make their voices heard and convince the state’s chief executive to sign the bill into law.

The Governor has until December 17th, 2014 to act on the bill. 

The legislation would establish a two-year moratorium on the Department of Environmental Conservation’s controversial plan to eradicate all wild mute swans in the state by 2025 and declare them a “prohibited species.” The also requires the state Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) to demonstrate that actual damage to the environment or other species has been caused by the mute swan population across the state.
The legislation passed both houses of the Legislature with an overwhelming majority. Sen. Tony Avella is the bill’s sponsor in the Senate.
“People in my community feel very strongly about the mute swans that live in Sheepshead Bay and the thought of the state coming in and shooting or gassing these birds is not acceptable to anyone here,” Assemblyman Cymbrowitz said.
Assemblyman Cymbrowitz, a member of the Environmental Conservation Committee, has urged DEC to explore non-lethal alternatives to managing the swan population.
The signing of this legislation into law would serve as a major victory for animal rights and environmental protection groups that have joined Assemblyman Cymbrowitz in fighting DEC’s plan, including GooseWatch NYC, the Regal Swan Foundation and Save Our Swans.
“Now’s the time to speak up and tell the Governor to sign this legislation,” Assemblyman Cymbrowitz said.
Anyone wishing to write to Governor Cuomo may do so at the following address: NYS State Capitol Building, Albany, NY 12224. The Governor’s office may be reached by email at or by phone at (518) 474-8390.