LAKELAND, Fla. (AP) — A flock of swans that grew from a gift nearly 70 years ago from Queen Elizabeth II has been rounded up in Florida to ensure they are all healthy.
On Tuesday, there were 50 swans collected in Lakeland, which is east of Tampa. Park supervisor Steve Williams said the birds are a cherished part of the city.
“I mean, they are a city icon. They are. And we take very good care of them,” he said.
The roundup each fall enables veterinarians to conduct health examinations of the city-owned swans, with those scheduled for Wednesday morning. Lakeland’s swans are descended from a pair of mute swans given by the late Queen Elizabeth II in 1957.
The goal is to keep them all in good shape, said veterinarian Price Dickson.
“Tomorrow we will be taking all of these swans one by one and giving each of them a physical exam, weighing them, checking for any infections, any wounds, any problems that would need to be addressed,” Dixon said.
The city has conducted the annual wellness checkups since 1980.