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Quiz about The Bonny Swans
Quiz about The Bonny Swans

The Bonny Swans Trivia Quiz


Swans are beautiful, majestic birds who deserve their own quiz, so here is my attempt to do them justice.

A multiple-choice quiz by rossian. Estimated time: 3 mins.
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Author
rossian
Time
3 mins
Type
Multiple Choice
Quiz #
330,155
Updated
Dec 03 21
# Qns
10
Difficulty
Average
Avg Score
7 / 10
Plays
3832
Awards
Top 10% Quiz
Last 3 plays: ZWOZZE (10/10), jxhsutt (7/10), teachdpo (7/10).
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Question 1 of 10
1. Swans are classified under the genus Cygnus. Which species is called Cygnus cygnus? Hint


Question 2 of 10
2. The black swan is native to which continent? Hint


Question 3 of 10
3. The pattern on the bill of a Bewick's swan is unique to each bird and can be used as a means of identification.


Question 4 of 10
4. Of all the swans, the trumpeter swan is generally considered to be which of the following? Hint


Question 5 of 10
5. The coscoroba swan, found in South America, has a bill of which colour? Hint


Question 6 of 10
6. There are several collective names for swans - which of these is NOT one of them? Hint


Question 7 of 10
7. The Bewick's swan is named after Thomas Bewick, who was which of these? Hint


Question 8 of 10
8. Both Bewick's swan and the whistling swan are sub-species of the genus Cygnus columbianus. By what name is this genus known in English? Hint


Question 9 of 10
9. The male swan is called a cob, deriving from the middle English word 'cobbe'. What is the usual meaning attributed to this? Hint


Question 10 of 10
10. An annual ceremony on the river Thames in England is known as 'swan ______'? Hint



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Most Recent Scores
May 24 2024 : ZWOZZE: 10/10
May 17 2024 : jxhsutt: 7/10
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Score Distribution

quiz
Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. Swans are classified under the genus Cygnus. Which species is called Cygnus cygnus?

Answer: Whooper

The whooper swan breeds in Iceland and northern Europe and Asia, before migrating south, including as far as the UK, for the winter. They arrive in the UK from October and leave again in March. It is the Eurasian version of the North American Trumpeter swan.

The whooper swan is Finland's national bird. The Bewick's swan is Cygnus columbianus bewickii, the mute swan is Cygnus olor and the trumpeter swan is Cygnus buccinator.
2. The black swan is native to which continent?

Answer: Australia

The only swans seen by Europeans until the 17th century were white, leading to a common expression from Roman times (and originally in Latin) which compared an impossible situation to being like a black swan, i.e. non existent. This had to change once the black swan became a reality, and the expression now means a situation commonly accepted as true but which may be disproved once new evidence is found.

The discovery of the black swan was made in 1697 by Willem de Vlamingh, a Dutch explorer, who mapped out the south-west of Australia. He named the Swan River (Zwaanenrivier in Dutch) after the black swans he had discovered there.
3. The pattern on the bill of a Bewick's swan is unique to each bird and can be used as a means of identification.

Answer: True

The Bewick's swan has a bill which is partly yellow (near the face) and partly black. The pattern is different for each bird, which has enabled scientists to study them and recognise them on their return from migration. The British Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust has been studying Bewick's swans since the 1960s, and have identified and named over 10,000 individual swans.

They include one pair who stayed together for 21 years, returning to the UK together each year. This information has been taken from www.wwt.org.uk.
4. Of all the swans, the trumpeter swan is generally considered to be which of the following?

Answer: Largest

The male trumpeter swan has a body length of between five and six feet and a wingspan of seven to eight feet. The mute swan can rival its wingspan but usually has a shorter body. Despite the dimensions, the mute swan is usually heavier and is one of the heaviest flying birds. Obviously, the measurements are average and some mute swans can be larger than some trumpeters.
5. The coscoroba swan, found in South America, has a bill of which colour?

Answer: Red

As well as its bill, the coscoroba's legs and feet are also red. It also has black tips to its primary feathers, which are more clearly seen in flight. The coscoroba swan resembles a goose or duck around the head, but with a swan-like body, and it is the smallest member of the swan family. Its name comes from the sound of its call, usually written as cos-co-ro-oa.
6. There are several collective names for swans - which of these is NOT one of them?

Answer: Parliament

The longest list of collective names for swans I found while researching was this: herd, bank, bevy, drift, eyrar, game, lamentation, sounder, squadron, team, wedge, whiteness and whiting. Elsewhere, I discovered ballet, team and regatta suggested. The most common seem to be bevy and herd, with flock thrown into the equation sometimes. Wedge applies to swans in flight, and reflects the 'V' formation. Parliament is used for a collection of owls and sometimes for rooks.
7. The Bewick's swan is named after Thomas Bewick, who was which of these?

Answer: Engraver

Bewick was born in Northumberland, England, in 1753 and died in 1828, so did not live to see the development of photography. He was apprenticed at the age of fourteen to an engraver, and specialised in engraving in wood. Bewick was also an ornithologist and produced the 'History of British Birds', illustrated with his woodcuts.

His achievements were recognised by his name being used for both a species of swan and a wren.
8. Both Bewick's swan and the whistling swan are sub-species of the genus Cygnus columbianus. By what name is this genus known in English?

Answer: Tundra swan

Although both sub-species breed in the Holarctic regions, the Bewick's swan stays in the European regions of Siberia and the whistling swan favours Canada and Alaska. The whistling swan is larger than the Bewick's (although smaller than the trumpeter swan, which also lives in North America) and its bill is mainly black.
9. The male swan is called a cob, deriving from the middle English word 'cobbe'. What is the usual meaning attributed to this?

Answer: Leader of a group

The name of cobbe has been traced back to the 15th century when it was applied both to the swan and the human chief of a group. Although the derivation is not clear, the name seems to have been transferred to the male swan as the leader of his 'tribe'. Female swans are known as pens and the young are called cygnets, from the genus name and the French suffix 'et' for little.
10. An annual ceremony on the river Thames in England is known as 'swan ______'?

Answer: Upping

From the official website www.royal.gov.uk, I have found the following: 'This historic ceremony dates from the twelfth century, when the Crown claimed ownership of all mute swans.' In addition to the monarch, two Livery companies (the Dyers and the Vintners) have ownership rights.

Originally, swans were marked by nicks to their bills, with the Monarch's being left unmarked, but this has now been changed to rings on their legs. The event takes place in July, when the unmarked cygnets are still with their parents and can be ringed in the same way.

In earlier times, swans were eaten, but the primary purpose now (apart from tradition) is to keep a census and check on their health.
Source: Author rossian

This quiz was reviewed by FunTrivia editor crisw before going online.
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