An RSPCA inspector freed a gull after he became tangled in fishing line on a pond in Hartlepool.
The bird was spotted by a member of the public on a pond in Ward Jackson Park, Elwick Road.
It was clear that the fishing line that the bird had become tangled up in was also tangled around a tree on an island in the water.
The gull was completely stuck and unable to escape.
An RSPCA inspector arrived to see if the bird could easily be freed, but once she saw that the bird was stuck on the island in the middle of the water, she knew it would take a trained water rescue officer to attend.
Chief inspector Mark Gent was called and he organised a water rescue for first thing the following morning.
He said: “The gull was settled when I arrived and it was clear he was not going to get out of this tangle on his own.
“I donned my flood suit and headed into the water to help.
“I steadily approached the bird, got him nice and safe in my arms and carefully snipped the fishing wire to free him, before bringing him back onto dry land.
“Thankfully he seemed very healthy and unfazed by his ordeal. He flapped his feathers and scuttled off.”
Sadly, freeing animals who have become caught up in fishing lines is something the RSPCA is called about all too often.
Chief inspector Gent added: “The message here is to ask anglers to safely dispose of unwanted fishing line and any litter they may see- discarded tackle can cause horrible injuries.
“It doesn’t take too long to get rid of it properly. I went back after the rescue and cleared the line and floats from the pond to try and stop this happening to another poor animal.”
The RSPCA is a charity which relies on public donations to exist.
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