How the Lake Eola swans deal with Fireworks at the Fountain

Leafy greens, swan food only for Orlando's feathered friends

By Emilee Speck - Digital journalist

ORLANDO, Fla. - More than 50 swans call Lake Eola Park home, but the park also happens to host the biggest Fourth of July fireworks show in Orlando.

So how do our beloved swans feel about the 959-blast, 20-minute fireworks show?

According to city of Orlando officials, the swans are very accustomed to the fireworks display and typically find hiding places around the lake if they need them.

To ease the burden for the swans, guests can bring leafy greens or purchase swan feed from the feeders around the park. The funds from the feeders go back to the swans to cover the costs of their veterinary care and heath checkups, according to the city.

However, please don't feed the swans anything else.

The city recently released two new black-necked swans into Lake Eola in the hope that one of them will mate with Queenie, the widowed black-necked swan. Queenie's old mate died because someone fed him popcorn.

"We love our swans and want them to be healthy and happy for life, so feeding them the appropriate treats is critical!" a city spokesperson said.

A program, named Swan-A-Thon, was was created by City Commissioner Patty Sheehan in an effort to raise money for the new swans. Anyone can donate to Swan-A-Thon at orlandotrust.org and select "Swan-A-Thon" from the drop-down menu.

The Discover Downtown shop at 201 South Orange Ave. sells plush swan toys, including one named Buddy after Mayor Buddy Dyer, and one named Queenie, and the proceeds go directly to Swan-A-Thon.

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