POLICE are appealing for the public's help to track down the person responsible for killing a mute swan in Poole Park.

An investigation has been launched by police over the incident on Sunday after receiving a report that a swan was believed to have been shot by an unknown object after being found dead in Poole Park.

Early indications suggest this could have been done using an air weapon or possibly a catapult with lead shot, but further enquiries are ongoing.

The swan was found dead close to The Ark in the main boating lake. A witness reported seeing the swan alive but injured near to the subway to Baiter Park at around 6.30am earlier on the same morning.

The incident was reported to police at 8.15am on October 3.

Wildlife Crime Officer Pete Raymond, of Poole Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: “I am appealing to anyone who was in Poole Park at the time and may have witnessed the incident to please get in touch.

“If you have any information about who was responsible, please contact Dorset Police.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact Dorset Police at www.dorset.police.uk, via email 101@dorset.pnn.police.uk or by calling 101, quoting occurrence number 55210159523. Alternatively, to stay 100 per cent anonymous, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers online at Crimestoppers-uk.org or call Freephone 0800 555 111.