anglers are being urged to take more care after a young swan at an East Renfrewshire reservoir became tangled in a fishing line.

Concerns for the injured cygnet’s wellbeing are growing after repeated attempts to free the bird failed.

One visitor to Snypes Dam, on the outskirts of Neilston, called in the Scottish SPCA after noticing that the fishing line has become lodged in the bird’s mouth, making it difficult for it to eat.

Barrhead resident John Wilson, who takes his dogs for a walk at the reservoir every day, said the cygnet has been in distress for weeks.

Mr Wilson, 76, added: “The fishing line is in its mouth and wrapped around its body.

“I can’t get near it as it just flies away but the situation is very worrying and getting worse.”

Animal welfare officers from the Scottish SPCA have joined Mr Wilson at the reservoir a number of times but have been unable to help the cygnet.

To make matters worse, the bird – believed to be one of seven infant swans that hatched at the popular reserve last spring – appears to have been spurned by its parents and is having to compete with family members for limited food resources.

Mr Wilson added: “There have been a few times when I’ve called the SSPCA to report a sighting of the bird but, by the time they get there, it has gone.

“I would love to see this cygnet being helped and then released again.”

Experts at the Scottish SPCA have reminded anglers of their responsibility to help protect wildlife from harm.

Chief Superintendent Mike Flynn told the Barrhead News: “We urge the public to be more careful with their fishing hooks and line when disposing of them, as we deal with so many incidents which are very similar on a weekly basis.

“The hooks can get stuck to the limbs, face and mouth of birds in the area and, if swallowed, it can cause internal damage.

“This sort of thing could so easily be avoided by people clearing away every piece of equipment.”