Cymbrowitz Bill Giving Mute Swans Stay of Execution Nears Deadline


A bill introduced by Sheepshead Bay Assemblyman Steven Cymbrowitz to save New York’s mute swans from extermination has been delivered to Governor Cuomo, and the lawmaker is urging animal rights advocates to make their voices heard and convince the state’s chief executive to sign the bill into law.

The Governor has until November 21 to act on the bill.

The legislation (A.3675) would establish a two-year moratorium on the Department of Environmental Conservation’s controversial plan to eradicate all wild mute swans in the state by 2025 and declare them a “prohibited species.”

The also requires the state Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) to demonstrate that actual damage to the environment or other species has been caused by the mute swan population across the state.

The legislation passed both houses of the Legislature with an overwhelming majority. Sen. Tony Avella was the Senate sponsor.

Assemblyman Steven Cymbrowitz
Assemblyman Steven Cymbrowitz

“People in my community feel very strongly about the mute swans that live in Sheepshead Bay and the thought of the state coming in and shooting or gassing these birds is not acceptable to anyone,” said Cymbrowitz.

Cymbrowitz, a member of the Environmental Conservation Committee, has also urged DEC to explore non-lethal alternatives to managing the swan population.

The signing of this legislation into law would serve as a victory for animal rights and environmental protection groups that have joined Cymbrowitz in fighting DEC’s plan, including GooseWatch NYC, the Regal Swan Foundation and Save Our Swans.

“Now’s the time to speak up and tell the Governor to sign this legislation,” said Cymbrowitz.

Anyone wishing to contact Governor Cuomo may write to him at the NYS State Capitol Building, Albany, NY 12224, by email at by phone at (518) 474-8390.