TESTS have been carried out following reports of dead ‘upside down swans’ and fish in the River Stour.

Residents took to social media with concerns about the water quality at Eye Bridge in Wimborne.

There were claims of numerous species of dead fish and swans in the river, along with a ‘chemical smell.’

A red sign has been placed on the entrance to the river which reads: “Entering the water is not advised. There may be submerged hazards, and the water quality cannot be guaranteed.”

Newly elected MP for Mid Dorset and North Poole, Vikki Slade, quickly responded to the issue and visited Eye Bridge to investigate.

She said: “This is not yet a bathing water area, although I have already applied to DEFRA for this status and will do so using my new position.

“I can see no evidence of dead fish caught in the reeds; in fact, there are small fish swimming happily. There were egrets and swans here, too. There is no smell or sign of oil, etc., on the water.

“It has been one of my policy issues to deal with sewage in the water and improving the state of our rivers, harbour and coast and I will work hard to try and resolve any issue that is present at Eye Bridge.”

A dog walker said: “I walk my dog at the river almost everyday and I haven’t noticed anything unusual.

“He drinks the water and has been completely fine.”

A representative from the Environment Agency was at Eye Bridge on July 7 and 8, carrying out oxygen and ammonia tests in the river.

They said: “We take reports like this very seriously and we have a 24-hour line for people who have concerns about water quality.”

A spokesperson for the Environment Agency said: “We attended reports of dead and distressed wildlife and fish on the River Stour in the Wimborne area yesterday and today.

“No signs of any pollution both from visual inspections and water quality tests were observed, nor did we see any dead or distressed fish or other wildlife or evidence that there had been any.

“Samples show all water quality field tests were within normal and expected ranges for the water course at this time of year.”