This fall somebody put two fake plastic swans on the little pond at Schiller Park. Since the pond already is teeming with real waterfowl, you could reasonably ask why some fake swans got tossed into the mix. My understanding is that they are supposed to discourage other migrating birds — specifically, those loud-squawking, ever-crapping, aggressive Canadian geese — from landing and fouling the area. Swans and Canadian geese apparently are mortal enemies from way back.
From a distance the swans are relatively realistic looking. The two of them even have different postures. But the illusion of real swans is totally lost when the pond freezes over, as happened recently, and the swans get frozen into immobility.
And yet . . . the Canadian geese still seem to be avoiding the pond, even after the swans have been exposed as fakes. Maybe Canadian geese, like most bullies, just aren’t that smart.