Cygnet rescued after becoming entangled in disposable face mask

  • Video from Cyril Bennis

A baby swan is now safely back with its mother after a disposable facemask became entangled around its back and legs.

Video shows how Cyril Bennis, who's a swan care volunteer in Stratford-upon-Avon, first distracts the cygnet's mother by laying down breadcrumbs along the side of the river.

The swan's mother is distracted before Cyril removes the mask from the cygnet Credit: Cyril Bennis

He then carefully removes the facemask's cords from the baby's legs and back, before checking it over and releasing it back into the water - much to the delight of its mother and the crowd of onlookers.

The facemask is removed Credit: Cyril Bennis

ITV News Central has previously reported on warnings of a 'pandemic for the ocean' as dumped PPE adds to an already growing litter problem, and now its effects are being shown closer to home.

During the Marine Conservation Society's annual beach clean last year they found masks, gloves and other protective gear on 30% of UK beaches.

Volunteers also found PPE on 69% of their inland litter collections.

Most brands of disposable masks contain some kind of plastic, so those which aren’t disposed of properly can take up to 450 years to decompose.