Irish Mythology | The Swan


castle in the ocean with swans and waves

Swans feature often in tales of Irish mythology, the most famous of which is undoubtedly that of the Children of Lir.

At over 1.5 metres in length, weighing over 15 kilos, and with a wingspan of up to 3 metres, the swan is considered one of our largest flying birds.  There are seven species of swans around the world, but in Ireland we are graced by the presence of the Mute Swan, which can be identified by its characteristic orange bill with its ‘bump’ at the base, and its striking black facial markings.

Did you know that an adult male is called a ‘cob’, a female is called a ‘pen’, and the young are called ‘cygnets’? A group of swans is known as a ‘bevy’, but when in flight, they are called a ‘wedge’. The Irish call them Eala (pronounced ellah). Did you know also that they can live…

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