THE RSPCA has appealed to anglers to clear up their fishing litter after a swan became entangled in fishing line at Gooderstone Water Gardens.
This male swan (pictured) was spotted on Saturday, April 19, with line coming from its beak. The RSPCA attended but, despite several rescue attempts, the bird flew off and it was not until last Tuesday that local man Gary Dent, helped by a friend, caught the swan and managed to get it to the RSPCA Wildlife Centre at East Winch.
Vets operated on the bird to remove the pike lure, which was embedded in its tongue and the roof of its mouth. The line had gone down its throat and was also removed.
The swan is now recovering but being given antibiotics for its badly-swollen tongue. It will not be released to the wild until it can eat, as it was weighing only 7.8 kilograms when brought in. A healthy swan should weigh between nine and 11kgs.
Wildlife centre manager Alison Charles said: "This swan had suffered quite a gruesome injury but we are hopeful that he will begin to eat properly again.
"This shows how much injury and distress can be caused by discarded fishing litter. We appeal to all anglers to cut up line and recover hooks and take them home to dispose of them properly."
In East Anglia in 2006, the RSPCA's inspectors and animal collection officers tackled 1,649 incidents of animals caught up in discarded fishing lines and hooks.
Taken from Lynn News