Magness Lake IBA is owned by the Eason family. The property is 700 acres, though the area used by the swans is 60 acres. The lake is a remnant oxbow with a dike, and adjacent pastures and bottomland hardwoods. Specifically, it includes a lake, mature planted pine, buttonbush swamp, and fescue and Bermuda grass pasture. The land is privately owned but the public is welcomed to observe the swans. From the intersection of AR 110 and 25 in Heber Springs go east on 110 for 4 miles, turn left on Hays Road and drive 1/2 mile. 

Ornithological Summary

Site regularly supports significant densities of one or more of the bird species considered by Audubon as vulnerable in Arkansas: Magness Lake regularly supports a growing number of wintering Trumpeter Swans. The largest concentration in the State and the largest wintering flock of Trumpeters in the southern United States. This wintering site has the longest history of continuous use of any wintering site used by Trumpeters Swans. This site is important for Arkansas birds because Arkansas is a part of the Trumpeter Swans' historic wintering range. This wintering site supports many more swans than any other in the State, making it a vital part of the restoration efforts ongoing in northern states.

Conservation Issues

Visitors are welcome while the swans are present (early November to early March; late afternoons are best) but park only in designated areas, be respectful of private property and the birds, and help keep others from trespassing or feeding the birds unhealthy food such as bread.


The land is owned by the Eason family.


The "other" type open water habitat type is artificial impoundment.

Land Use

During Nov-March, the area is open to the public for watching and feeding the swans. As many as 500-600 people arrive on any given weekend. Feeding stations have been set up to release corn at specific times for the swans. The pastures are hayed and the hay is sold to raise money to buy corn. Fishing occurs on the Little Red River.