Plea to anglers after baby swan killed in Chesterfield

Anglers are being urged to take home their equipment and litter after fishing – after a cygnet died when it became trapped in Chesterfield.

Monday, 6th September 2021, 11:12 am
Updated Tuesday, 7th September 2021, 10:43 am

The RSPCA and firefighters attended Walton Dam after receiving reports that two cygnets were trapped in fishing equipment.

An RSPCA spokesperson told the Derbyshire Times: “Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service was at the scene when we attended and had managed to rescue the birds from the water but sadly one had died.

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Walton Dam.

“The other cygnet was handed over into RSPCA care and is undergoing veterinary treatment, and once she has been rehabilitated from her ordeal will be released back into the wild.

“This sad case is a reminder of how damaging discarded fishing litter can be for wildlife. The majority of anglers do dispose of their litter properly and it is frustrating that those who don’t possibly don’t realise how dangerous it is to animals.

“We urge all anglers to take home any litter after fishing – as discarded nets, lines and hooks can easily snag water birds and other wildlife, causing terrible injuries, suffering that can lead to animals dying. All it takes is a little thought and care.”

A fire service spokesperson said: “At 5.58pm on Sunday, August 29, firefighters attended Walton Dam to rescue two swans which had become trapped in a fishing net.

“Firefighters from Chesterfield were first on scene, but requested the assistance of Buxton fire station’s water rescue unit due to the location of the swans.

“Crews rescued the two swans and provided oxygen therapy for one before handing both into the care of the RSPCA.”

Resident Linda Shipley, who lives near Walton Dam, has now started an online petition calling for fishing to be banned at the site.

“Recently my husband and I saved one of the cygnets which was trapped in fishing line,” she said.

“Luckily it was OK and swam back to the others.

“Fishing needs to end at Walton Dam.”

According to the RSPCA, those who enjoy fishing are being reminded of the dangers which are posed to wildlife from discarded equipment.

They are encouraged to follow the Angling Trust’s Take 5 campaign and make use of the Anglers National Line Recycling Scheme to dispose of their waste tackle and line.

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