To come across and approach Trumpeter Swans and not have the immediate take-off, is almost a surreal experience. Add in some soft early morning light and it can be magical.
Photos #1 through #7 are of the swans grooming and stretching their wings after a period of resting along the icy shore, taken just as the sun rose above the river channel.
Photos #8 through #12 are of several take-offs. It really is a 100 yard dash. It takes that long for a Trumpeter Swan which weighs more than 25 pounds to get airborne. They hit the water surface hard and it can sound like galloping horses before they achieve lift-off.
And then, of course, there is the non-angelic side of swans. Check out Photo #7. I chose one of a series of four, where one Trumpeter actually bit the other and I don't believe it was a love bite.