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In Pictures: Swan Uppers take to the Thames for annual census

The Queen retains the right to claim ownership of any unmarked mute swan swimming in open waters.

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Swan Uppers try to capture a swan and its cygnets near Windsor (Steve Parsons/PA)

Swan Uppers try to capture a swan and its cygnets near Windsor (Steve Parsons/PA)

Swan Uppers try to capture a swan and its cygnets near Windsor (Steve Parsons/PA)

The ancient ceremony of Swan Upping, the annual counting of swans on a stretch of the River Thames, has been taking place near Windsor.

Swan Uppers in red shirts, using a flotilla of boats, lift the birds from the water and check their health, and the young cygnets are ringed with individual identification numbers.

The Queen still retains the right to claim ownership of any unmarked mute swan swimming in open waters.

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Swan Uppers release a swan and its cygnets (Steve Parsons/PA)

Swan Uppers release a swan and its cygnets (Steve Parsons/PA)

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Swan Uppers release a swan and its cygnets (Steve Parsons/PA)

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The team check the health of cygnets (Steve Parsons/PA)

The team check the health of cygnets (Steve Parsons/PA)

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The team check the health of cygnets (Steve Parsons/PA)

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Swan Uppers take a break from rowing near Bourne End, Berkshire (Steve Parsons/PA)

Swan Uppers take a break from rowing near Bourne End, Berkshire (Steve Parsons/PA)

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Swan Uppers take a break from rowing near Bourne End, Berkshire (Steve Parsons/PA)

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(Steve Parsons/PA)

(Steve Parsons/PA)

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(Steve Parsons/PA)

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The Queen’s swan marker, David Barber, kneeling centre, is joined by Swan Uppers to inspect swans (Steve Parsons/PA)

The Queen’s swan marker, David Barber, kneeling centre, is joined by Swan Uppers to inspect swans (Steve Parsons/PA)

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The Queen’s swan marker, David Barber, kneeling centre, is joined by Swan Uppers to inspect swans (Steve Parsons/PA)

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David Barber inspects a swan (Steve Parsons/PA)

David Barber inspects a swan (Steve Parsons/PA)

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David Barber inspects a swan (Steve Parsons/PA)

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(Steve Parsons/PA)

(Steve Parsons/PA)

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(Steve Parsons/PA)

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(Steve Parsons/PA)

(Steve Parsons/PA)

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(Steve Parsons/PA)

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Swan Uppers on the Thames (Steve Parsons/PA)

Swan Uppers on the Thames (Steve Parsons/PA)

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Swan Uppers on the Thames (Steve Parsons/PA)

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(Steve Parsons/PA)

(Steve Parsons/PA)

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(Steve Parsons/PA)

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(Steve Parsons/PA)

(Steve Parsons/PA)

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(Steve Parsons/PA)

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