Feathered fury of Lanark Loch swans

Happier times...in May this year when the swans showed off their eight cygnets. Five have survived.
Happier times...in May this year when the swans showed off their eight cygnets. Five have survived.

A WOMAN has been hospitalised and three other people allegedly subjected to attacks by swans at Lanark Loch.

Now there are urgent calls for special measures to be taken to protect the public from over-protective mother birds, defending their young cygnets born at the lochside over the summer.

The loch park’s steward, South Lanarkshire Council, was asked to take action after an alleged incident in which an elderly woman taking her dog for a walk on the lochside pathway was attacked.

A mother swan came from the water onto the path to confront her and her pet.

However, the bird did not directly inflict the injuries she then suffered; these, it is claimed, came when she tried to escape the irate mother swan.

A relative, Weston Todd – who declined to name the woman – said: “She tried to get away from the swan by clambering up the steep embankment at that part of the pathway.

“However, she fell back down, breaking two bones in her hip and her collarbone. It happened about three weeks ago and she’s still in hospital.”

He went on to say that he had heard of three other recent occasions when members of the public using the loch pathway had been set upon by defensive mother swans.

He claimed these attacks were all on the same stretch of pathway and Weston believed that all three also slipped and fell back down the steep embankment.

He is now calling for the council to take measures to prevent a repeat of the incidents – in fear that even more serious injuries could result.

For more of this, pick up a copy of this week’s Carluke and Lanark Gazette.