Dogs to blame for fa­tal swan at­tacks

The Daily Telegraph - - Today’s Television -

THE pub­lic must keep their dogs under con­trol near swans af­ter a spate of fa­tal at­tacks, a royal of­fi­cial has warned.

David Bar­ber, the Queen’s swan marker, spoke out be­fore car­ry­ing out the an­nual pop­u­la­tion cen­sus along the Thames.

He re­ported that a num­ber of birds had died af­ter be­ing in­jured by dogs while nest­ing on the river, and there were also re­ports of egg theft and van­dal­ism. “We are hop­ing for an in­crease in cygnet num­bers in 2016, as the to­tal num­ber recorded dur­ing 2015 was a dis­ap­point­ing 83, com­pared to 120 in the pre­vi­ous year.

“Once again this year, van­dal­ism has af­fected many breed­ing pairs. Eggs have been stolen and swans have been at­tacked by dogs while on their nests. Sadly, some of the in­juries sus­tained by the par­ent birds have been fa­tal, re­sult­ing in young cygnets strug­gling to sur­vive on their own.”

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