Detroit Zoo says goodbye to beloved trumpeter swan 'Ron Swanson' after 20 years

Ron Swanson, the beloved resident of the Detroit Zoo had found sanctuary for nearly 20 years at the attraction. (Photo credit: Detroit Zoo)

The Detroit Zoo said goodbye to one of their own after making the decision to euthanize their beloved trumpeter swan Ron Swanson.

Zoo officials said over social media that Ron was put down after chronic foot issues that had plagued him. After health problems worsened, it prevented him from walking which ultimately led to the decision to humanely euthanize him.

"Ron was a favorite of staff members, guests and his beloved mate," the zoo wrote on Facebook. "He will be greatly missed."

Ron the swan was a staple of the Detroit Zoo, having found a home at the park in 2002. He was often seen paddling around the Cotton Family Wetlands in the summer and taking long naps on the ice in the winter, the zoo said. 

Through his 20 years at the zoo, he also found a mate in Leslie Knope, a fitting pair. 

Swans aren't always known for their temperament and can be quite territorial. But not Ron. Instead, he was the "exact opposite" the zoo said. 

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"He was a gentile bird and would even swim over to the shoreline and patiently wait to be hand-fed some of his diet when animal care staff approached the lake."

His mate is currently sharing space in the aardvark grotto with the America pelicans.