Ruppert Meets His Match

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Balboa's mascot black swan gets a mail order bride.

Pearl arrived in Balboa Bay some 3 weeks ago with the kindness of some people out toward the point on the Balboa Peninsula who wish to remain anonymous.

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Ruppert, is known as the "mascot" of Balboa Bay. It has been the wish of many that he have a mate, girlfriend, wife, better half, or whatever you call her.

Story & Photos By:

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Tom O'Loughlin

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Ruppert and Pearl hit it off immediately after Pearl was released from her cage on the Bay.

Some 6 or 7 days later Pearl disappeared. A call from Crystal Cove -near Laguna Beach- reported a black swan had been seen. The Harbor Patrol went down  and found nothing. Then, this past Wednesday night, June 16, some public employees had a general meeting. The Harbor Master, sitting next to a lady, told her of the "love story of Ruppert" and the missing Pearl.

The lady explained she was in charge of animal control for Orange County and it was strange, because she had a swan! In fact, the next day she was going up for auction.  Oh no!

So, as I pulled out into the harbor yesterday, lo and behold, here   comes the Harbor Patrol. Yep, with Pearl in a cage.

You can visit Pearl in the 400 East block of Edgewater within her cage.

Knowing what freedom means, she is not a happy camper, to say the least. Ruppert is circling her cage and wants to continue the "togetherness".

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However, two reasons that  Pearl will not get her independence until the day after ours on the 4th of July. First, it is believed she should be kept within the cage longer than the original 3 or 4 days so she gets acclimated to her space. Secondly, the  commotion of July 4 here in the harbor may be too much for her and off she'll go.

So, although we all want Pearl "free", the decision is to be conservative this time around.