Slimbridge cygnet left home alone as parents migrate

The cygnet (left) with its adopted siblings. Credit: WWT

A Bewick's swan cygnet has been left "home alone" in Gloucestershire after his parents appear to have migrated to Arctic Russia, conservationists said. The youngster seems to have been abandoned at the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust (WWT) Slimbridge Wetland Centre.

Bewick's swans overwinter in the UK and Europe before returning to the Russian Arctic in spring, migrating north in large family groups, and due to the recent mild weather all but ten of the flock at Slimbridge have already departed.

The abandoned youngster has attached itself to another pair and their four cygnets, but is still calling for its parents.

WWT researcher Julian Newth said: "Occasionally, cygnets become separated from their parents during migration when there is perhaps bad weather, but it is rather more unusual to see such a separation before the journey has begun."