A REWARD of up to £1,000 is now being offered in the hunt to try and track down a swan and six eggs which disappeared in Stockton Heath.

Crimestoppers has stepped forward to put up the money as the mystery surrounding the male swan and six eggs taken from Ackers pit grows.

Animal lovers were horrified to discover on Sunday, May 11 that the bird and his eggs were missing after being spotted together with a female swan the day before.

Regulars to the area have seen the swan pair nesting with their eggs over the past month and the couple have made the pit their home for the past six years.

The RSPCA say they are treating the disappearance of the bird and eggs as suspicious.

Carolyn Moston,visited the pair almost daily with husband Darren, said: "The female had been sat on them for 40 days and they were due to hatch any day.

"We were there on Saturday afternoon and they were there but on Sunday the next was completely empty and it looked like the nest hadn't been disturbed.

"The nest itself was still there and there are no feathers or egg shells, they have just completely gone.”

At the same time a number of metal no cycling signs and a Stockton Heath Parish Council notice board were vandalised and some taken from the nature spot.

A parish council spokesman said: “The parish council wish to publicise the incident and request information from the general public.

“A reward has been offered through Crimestoppers of up to £1,000 for the arrest and conviction of those responsible.

“The anonymity and confidentiality will be maintained of any informants who might come forward.”

If you know anything about the swans you can contact Crimestoppers, anonymously on 0800 555111 or visit crimestoppers-uk.org.