At least a dozen swans found dead around Waterford lake sparking investigation

The DNR is waiting for test results to come back after sending away the bodies of seven swans found on a lake in Waterford.

Usually, it doesn't take long to find the Mute swans on Maceday Lake.

"They are not a native species to Michigan but over time they have taken a foothold and they are territorial," said Lt. Todd Szyska, DNR.

They are known to be territorial and downright mean at times. 

"There have been jet skiers that have been attacked through the years and they move off other waterfowl," he said. "They are a bird that likes to have it all to their own."

But lately, the bodies of swans have been found in the yards and shallow waters of people living on the lake and it has caught the attention of the state’s Department of Natural Resources. 

"I know our officers retrieved seven and some of them were in bad decay, so some of them had been floating longer than others," he said.

Those seven are just the ones the DNR collected. Others in the area have found more - possibly adding up to 12 dead mute swans this year alone.  One person even paid to have a dead swan tested for poison. 

"From the initials on that,  it was saying it was antifreeze," Szyska said. "Hopefully that is not the case but if it is, is we can get any tips on that, we will follow up on it"

This is why the DNR is doing its own round of testing on the seven Mute swans they’ve collected. They were sent to a lab at Michigan State University and the results are expected in about a week.

"A toxicology report can be run on the specimen and we can determine if they were poisoned or if it was natural causes," he said.

While they await the results of those tests they are hopeful someone with information comes forward. 

"My plea is to the public that’s around Maceday Lake, if someone is poisoning them if that is really what is going on if anybody can call and give any information they might have on this," Szyska said.

The DNR isn't the only one involved. PETA is offering up to $5,000 as a reward for any information that leads to an arrest in this case.