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This is the official blog of the City of Lakeland, Florida. Check back frequently to stay up to date with all that going on in our beautiful city!


CITY OF LAKELAND SUCCESSFULLY USES INCUBATOR TO HATCH AUSTRALIAN BLACK SWANS
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LAKELAND, FL (February 4, 2016) - The City of Lakeland successfully hatched Australian Black Swan eggs using an incubator.  Dr. Patricia Mattson with Companion Animal Hospital said, “We are so excited because there are no documented cases of Black Swan eggs successfully incubated before now.” She added “This is a great day for the swan program and our beautiful City.” Mattson is the official veterinarian for the City of Lakeland’s swans.

 

The City of Lakeland purchased a Lyon incubator to assist in hatching swan eggs particularly Australian Black Swan eggs.  Steve Platt, City of Lakeland Parks & Recreation Supervisor said, “Black swans are not the greatest parents.  Our birds neglect their young and don’t take very good care of their eggs.”  The incubator cost $3,500.  Platt said, “We have tried unsuccessfully with less expensive incubators but this year we had three eggs hatch.”

 

Australian Black Swans cost between $600-$800 per bird and the City currently has 20 black swans in its flock. The City of Lakeland purchased Australian Black Swans in the early 1990’s.  Platt said, “We are really excited because our Australian Black Swans haven’t produced any surviving offspring in the past seven years.”

 

Swans made their first appearance in Lakeland in the 1920s as people’s pets but by 1954 the first population of swans was completely wiped out by predators and disease. In 1957, Lakeland resident Mrs. Robert Pickhardt, who was residing in England at the time, reached out to the Queen of England to help restore the Lakeland’s swan population. According to British law, the Queen owns all of the swans along the Thames River in England.

 

Queen Elizabeth graciously donated a pair of mute swans from Richard the Lion-Hearted’s flock to Lakeland, provided the City would pay for the shipping and handling. The two swans adapted very well to their new home in Lakeland, where their offspring still thrives today.

 

Lakeland has a flock of 75 swans that live in downtown Lakeland between Lake Morton and Lake Mirror. The swan population is made up of four species: Australian Black Swans, White Mutes, South American Black-Necked Swans and White Coscoroba Swans. Lakeland is also home to many other bird species, which makes it a great attraction for bird enthusiasts. 

 

The City of Lakeland takes good care of its feathered friends by performing an annual “swan round up” to administer wellness exams. City workers and volunteers travel the lakes by boat and capture Lakeland’s swan population. After the birds are caught, they are placed in holding pens where veterinarians check their health before releasing them back to their water front homes.


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ANNUAL SWAN ROUNDUP OCTOBER 1ST
 
LAKELAND, FL (September 23, 2014) -- The City of Lakeland Parks Division will be on Lake Morton at 7:00 a.m. Wednesday, October 1st for the 34th Annual Swan Roundup.  Crews will be catching and herding the swans as the initial part of their annual veterinary check-up. The swans will be confined in large holding pens on the south side of the lake for their annual wellness examinations that will start Thursday morning, October 2nd at 7:30 a.m. with Patricia Mattson, DVM. The Annual Swan Round-Up allows Lakeland's Parks and Recreation Department to closely monitor the health and vitality of Lakeland’s swan population. 
 
The original swans on Lake Morton were donated by Queen Elizabeth of the United Kingdom in 1957.  As Lakeland’s swan flock grew, it became paramount to give the regal birds an annual health check so the Swan Roundup began.  This practice started in 1980 and has continued every year since then. The swans were first cared for by veterinarian (emeritus) and original "Swanvet" W.G. Gardner who recently passed but his dedication to the flock carries on with Dr. Mattson. 
 
Dr. Mattson has almost 20 years of experience in veterinary medicine.  She the owner of Companion Animal Hospital a full service facility that provides general medical care, preventive medical care, vaccinations, health certificates, caesarean section, diagnostic services, on-site kennel, on-site laboratory testing, flea control, dietary counseling, spay/neuter, declawing, radiology, general surgery, dentistry, emergency services, microchipping, pharmacy services and boarding.


The City of Lakeland Parks Division will be on Lake Morton at 7:30 a.m. Tuesday, October 9th for the 32nd Annual Swan Roundup. Crews will be catching and herding the swans as the initial part of their annual veterinary check-up.The swans will be confined in large holding pens on the south side of the lake for inoculations and wellness examinations that will start Wednesday morning, October 10th at 7:30 a.m. with Patricia Mattson, DVM.

The Annual Swan Round-Up allows Lakeland's Parks and Recreation Department to closely monitor the health and vitality of Lakeland’s swan population. On Wednesday morning, each swan will be given a wellness examination by veterinarian Patricia Mattson. They will also be weighed, vaccinated, and given a microchip if necessary so their health can be easily tracked.

The original swans on Lake Morton were donated by Queen Elizabeth of the United Kingdom in 1957. The swans were first cared for by veterinarian (emeritus) and original "Swanvet" W.G. Gardner. As Lakeland’s swan flock grew, it became paramount to give the regal birds an annual health check so the Swan Roundup began. This practice started in 1980 and has continued every year since then.

Dr. Mattson has almost 20 years of experience in veterinary medicine. She the owner of Companion Animal Hospital a full service facility that provides general medical care, preventive medical care, vaccinations, health certificates, caesarean section, diagnostic services, on-site kennel, on-site laboratory testing, flea control, dietary counseling, spay/neuter, declawing, radiology, general surgery, dentistry, emergency services, microchipping, pharmacy services and boarding.