‘Park ranger threw injured swan at me’

A swan on Lurgan Park Lake. INLM2611-517gc
A swan on Lurgan Park Lake. INLM2611-517gc

Two investigations have been launched after a Lurgan woman accused one of the park rangers in Lurgan Park of throwing an injured swan at her.

The woman in her sixties, who did not wish to be named, said the incident happened last Wednesday at around 8.30pm.

Both the PSNI and Craigavon Council are investigating the alleged assault.

She said: “I was out for a walk with my friend. We were walking past the park lake, the bit where you’d see ducks and swans.

“We saw a swan that was looking emaciated. It was injured. It looked to have a broken leg.”

She continued: “I went to get a warden who told me the swan had been like that for a week and there was nothing he could do, it wasn’t in his job description to look after injured swans.

“I asked him, ‘What about humanity or compassion for the poor animal?’ I told him it needed a vet and I offered to get the swan to a vet. He told me I wasn’t allowed to take the swan. He picked it up and I said to him, ‘You’re not 
going to ring a vet, are you?’

“At this, he just fired it at me and said, ‘You can do whatever you like with it’”

She said she had since contacted the police, the USPCA and the council.

A council spokesperson said: “An internal investigation is currently ongoing into an incident that occurred in Lurgan Park last Wednesday evening and council cannot comment further.

“We can, however, confirm that the swan died on Monday morning. Depending on the situation, normal procedure should park staff see an injured swan is to call the vet.”

Police are also investigating an alleged assault whereby a 67-year-old woman reported that an injured swan had been thrown at her by a man.