A pair of black swans in Dyrhólaey

Black swans are a rare sight in Iceland, but a pair of black swans was spotted near the black cliffs of Dyrhólaey in south Iceland. Black swans arrive in Iceland from the British Isles and the first sighting of a black swan in thet country was only ten years ago. 

According to ornithologist Ævar Pedersen, black swans are very rare in Iceland and it's even more rare that they're a couple. 

Black swans were originally only found in Australia. The birds were moved to parks and reserves in Europe over the centuries from which they escaped and nested outside of their enclosures. The black colour is due to melanin in their feathers, which is not present in the more common white variety. 

Over the years, mbl.is has reported the occasional sightings of black swans in Iceland. In 2013 mbl.is received photographs of a black swan in a group of white swans in Þykkvabær, and in 2012  a pair of black swans were spotted in Hvalsnes, east Iceland. Pedersen says that if the two swans are indeed a couple, it's quite possible that they might nest in Iceland. 


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