Hampshire & Isle of Wight

'Stubborn' swan blocks M27 at Fareham

Swan on M27 Image copyright Highways England
Image caption After a failed attempt to fly away the swan was captured

This is the moment a traffic officer chased a "stubborn" swan down a motorway.

The obstinate bird caused a bottleneck on the M27 in Hampshire when it swanned onto the eastbound carriageway, blocking two lanes.

After a failed attempt to fly away, the swan was rescued and "safely taken away", Highways England said.

Swan Lifeline said the birds can often mistake roads for rivers in wet weather.

Highways England tweeted a picture of the bird holding up traffic at junction 11, near Fareham, at about 08:00 GMT.

The agency tweeted: "Two lanes are closed on the #M27 eastbound within J11 due to a stubborn swan on the carriageway!"

Image copyright Highways England
Image caption The bird blocked two lanes on the eastbound carriageway
Image copyright Thinkstock
Image caption Swan Lifeline said the birds can often mistake roads for rivers in wet weather

Swan Lifeline is working with the RSPCA and Hampshire Police, which sent officers to the scene.

It has advised the force to take the swan to a rescue centre near Portsmouth.

Manager Richard Stokes said: "Swans think the motorway is a river when it has been raining and the tarmac is wet, which is why it was running up and down the carriageway."

Recently, the rescue of a swan from a motorway in Gloucestershire by two police officers was likened to something out of spoof film Hot Fuzz, after they posted a selfie with the bird in their vehicle.

Other animals have also caused chaos by wandering into unexpected places, including last month when a cow blocked a rail line between Southampton and Brockenhurst.

Image copyright CrossCountry Trains
Image caption It is not just swans that can cause travel chaos - this cow blocked a rail line last month between Southampton and Brockenhurst

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