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Tuesday, May 13, 2003
Suspect(s) Unknown - We need your help!
A nesting swan has had her neck broken after vandals battered her to death on a golf course, the RSPCA said.
A greenkeeper at Brampton Heath Golf Club, Northamptonshire, found the hen bird dead in the water on Tuesday and immediately alerted the animal charity.
It is believed the bird is likely to have died trying to protect her unborn chicks against the attackers, who are also thought to have aimed about 30, 3ft-long wooden fence posts at her nest.
The posts, a lifesaving ring and a 6ft flagpole were found near the body.
RSPCA inspectors said the male "cob" is still on the nest and appears to be unharmed.
Jo Marlow, of the RSPCA, said: "This swan was the victim of a malicious and deliberate attack and it appears her neck was broken. It's a possibility she had been attacked using quite large posts.
"It's sickening. Swans are protected birds and obviously those found guilty of causing this sort of cruelty can expect a stiff penalty."
The swans that nest on the water are considered by members to be part of the culture of the golf club.
The club has offered a financial reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the bird's killers. Swans mate for life and it is not yet known what the effect of the death will have on the cob.
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