We have a pair of black swans with four cygnets. The female slipped and rolled down a hill – about 5 feet down. She flailed for a few minutes and died. It was wet so may have slipped. We think she was about 5-7 years old. I noticed that her normally black feet had turned orange/brown and wondered if that could be a sign of illness.
We are so sorry for your loss. There is a possibility that a change in coloration could be indicative of an illness, but abrasions and even chemicals/minerals in the water could cause discoloration in swan body parts. Without having a necropsy conducted, it would be difficult to determine if there was an infection present. The Regal Swan