Gull put to sleep after suffering injuries from fishing line in Sunderland

The incident happened in Sunderland. Credit: RSPCA

Animal charity RSPCA is urging anglers to take care after a gull had to be put down due to suffering injuries when it was caught in fishing line.

The bird had been rescued by firefighters at a lake in Sunderland on Thursday 28 December 2023.

Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service officers launched a dinghy to reach the bird who was stranded on an island on a stretch of water at Silksworth Lake, off North Moor Lane.

The stricken gull was found to have a large quantity of angling line and a weight wrapped around her wing and beak.

Once ashore, it became clear the gull had suffered a broken wing. It was decided that the kindest thing to do to end the bird’s suffering was to put her to sleep.

Officers from Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service came to help rescue the bird. Credit: RSPCA

The RSPCA has said that it in 2022, they received 1,245 calls about fishing litter across England and Wales.

The animal charity is urging fisherman to take more care with waste disposal and follow the Angling Trust’s Take 5 campaign.

RSPCA inspector Helen Bestwick, who attended the incident, said: “There was a large amount of fishing line weight and line wrapped around this poor bird who had suffered a badly broken wing.

“This again demonstrates how important it is that angler’s take every means possible to dispose of lines and tackle and prevent them from turning into lethal litter for wildlife on our waterways.”

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