'Too fat to escape': Greedy squirrel freed after getting trapped in bird feeder in Hartlepool

credit RSPCA
Credit: RSPCA

A squirrel that beat a bird feeder designed to keep it out had to be rescued by the RSPCA after finding itself too fat to escape.

A homeowner in Hartlepool found the trapped creature on Saturday and called the rescue charity.

RSPCA Officer Ruth Thomas-Coxon came to the rescue and used wire cutters to free the fury grey.

Ms Thomas-Coxon continues, "Luckily his predicament was spotted or he could have endured prolonged suffering.

"He was obviously frightened but otherwise appeared unscathed from his ordeal - however he probably needs to lay off the nuts for a while.

"I freed him in situ, as we're legally allowed to do, and as soon as he was free he made a quick getaway - which was good to see."

The RSPCA has asked homeowners to check bird feeders, even supposedly squirrel-proof ones, regularly, and to call for help if they find a trapped animal.

The charity also said that, although grey squirrels are considered an invasive alien species and cannot legally be released back into the wild if taken into care for rehabilitation or treatment, they can be legally released in situ.