Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

A revised account of initial mute swan (Cygnus olor) introductions to the northeastern United States.

Abstract

The success or failure of species introductions is linked to their location, date, size, and frequency. However, reliance on synthetic works to identify and quantify these factors can lead to errors if original sources are misinterpreted or misquoted. Furthermore, information cannot be verified if authors fail to cite their sources and repetition may lead to compounded errors that have implications for studies of invasion patterns and processes. Naturalized populations of mute swans (Cygnus olor) in the Atlantic Flyway, for example, are repeatedly attributed to two large introductions in New York State. Tracing this belief back to original reports and using additional historical records, this inquiry investigates the first introductions of mute swans in New York State and presents evidence for three initial sites. Newspapers are also recommended as a newly searchable archive of species introduction records.