In the early days of April, you will notice many things. First the snow begins to soften, and the ice begins to pit. These are clear signs of the coming of spring, but for most Yukoners these are not the indicators we recognize best. Instead, our main sign that spring has sprung, comes in the form of large white feathered honkers high above our heads.
The Yukon houses two varieties of swans in the spring, the more abundant Trumpeter Swan, and the similarly colored Tundra Swan. The open plots of river mouths swell with bolstered numbers of these large birds, as they make their way north to their summer feeding and breeding grounds along the arctic coastline. They use the Yukon River and Tagish River as a main travel corridor to find much needed rest and food along their long journey back north.
A great place to go and safely observe these majestic birds is Swan Haven on Marsh Lake, they have a great set up to view them from a safe distance. Other alternatives for viewing are Johnsons Crossing Bridge on your way to Tagish, or the mouth of the Yukon River into Lake Labarge near Horse Creek. Regardless of where you are viewing them be mindful of your distance, and be sure to snap a few pictures of these majestic birds.