A literal wild goose chase ensued in Mill Basin, Brooklyn on Monday, when a wild mute swan ambled into rush hour traffic and decided to have a little sit amongst the cars.
According to Todd Maisel, a former Daily News photographer who captured footage of the ornery bird, police had the pleasure of herding our swan friend through the streets—a festive fall swan parade.
Maisel tells Gothamist that the grumpy beast first bedded down on 63rd Street and Strickland Avenue around 4 p.m. on October 29, before deciding this spot was perhaps not quite right and seeking out a more comfortable post further down 63rd.
At some point, a concerned/infuriated motorist must have called the cops on the swan, because a team of authorities showed up to provide her with a police escort. The swan, however, seemed just fine on her own, thanks, and waddled away from her would-be entourage. Unfazed, she continued her quest for a little peace and quiet along Strickland Ave, trailing NYPD officers in her wake. This bird just won't be caged!
Our girl (a juvenile, according to Manhattan Bird Alert) reportedly seemed sick, though: One of the responding officers, former vet tech Katherine Wirth, told Maisel that the swan's inability to fly, along with the drool trickling from her bill, signaled illness. Even in her somewhat depleted condition, though, she eluded the cops, who seemed reticent to invade her personal space—which one officer characterized as "the danger zone," a silly description but a fair one, considering swans' infamously prickly and belligerent temperament.
Ultimately, the swan squad fenced in their quarry with metal gates, using their plastic shields to corral her, hissing and bridling, into a carrier. Perhaps she was (justifiably) incensed at having her freedom stolen from her; perhaps she was (also justifiably) annoyed at being called "broski" by her captors, when she is a lady with a name, which is Violet; can anyone really be at their best when they're trying to nap and some obnoxious interloper keeps prodding them awake?
In any case, Maisel reports that authorities transferred Violet to Animal Control, which in turn transferred her to an upstate wildlife preserve, where I hope her leisure time will not be subject to so many rude interruptions.