A PADDLE boarder on the river at Bradford on Avon came a cropper on Sunday after tangling with a male swan.

Despite stern warnings for river users to stay clear, the paddle boarder got too close to the swan and its nest and was tipped off his board into the water.

Alan Benson, 64, from Meadway in Trowbridge, said: “This is what will happen when you approach a male swan who is protecting his partner who is sat on eggs not that far away.

“There were also rowers and even a man magnet fishing,” said Mr Benson, who took the photographs.

The town council has warned river users not to go near the swans for their own safety while they are nesting.

It has put up signs along the River Avon and has contacted leisure providers asking their users not to go near the swans.

Following the reports of yet more nest site disturbances by individuals over the weekend, the council has now purchased two wildlife surveillance cameras to help protect the swans.

The council said: “Unfortunately, some individuals have ignored the warnings.

“Please, please do not get near to the swans during this critical period in their breeding cycle for your own safety and theirs.”

The male cob Mute Swan was defending its female pen, who is sitting on a clutch of seven eggs on the river bank near the Bradford on Avon town bridge.

Residents and the council have been very protective of the swans and their eggs, which are expected to hatch this week.