THUGS who shot a swan three times with an airgun and left him for dead have been slammed by nature lovers.
The male swan was with his four young cygnets in the nature reserve at Reddish Vale when the yobs struck.
Tame Valley Defence Group, which looks after wildlife in the area, is now appealing for more information about the incident so the hooligans can be brought to justice.
Pat Ruaune, group secretary, said: "The cob (male swan) was showing off his chicks to people he thought were his friends, when he was shot in the head, neck and body. The thugs were challenged by passers-by and reported to the police, but unfortunately we have not been able to trace them."
The swan survived the attack and is now recovering on another stretch of water.
[Click the image for the full story in the Metro News.]