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Byron Shire
April 12, 2021

Firey frees pleading gull from fishing line

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tangled-gullThis seagull was calling for help as it dangled above passersby walking on the Brunswick Heads footbridge on Tuesday.

With its legs and wings bound by discarded fishing line the distressed bird could do nothing but screech.

One pedestrian raised the alarm at the nearby fire station.

Fire officer Trudy Ashworth climbed to the rescue, bagged the gull and with the help of her team mates began the 5 minute, painstaking task of unravelling the poor animal’s appendages.

When the fishing line was fully removed the freed bird flew off to join a circling mate they did one victory lap then flew off together.


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  1. Beautiful, heart-warming story! Thanks to all caring people involved you do the human race proud …. except for irresponsible fishers of course who caused the problem in the first place. How many animals suffer unseen, unheard and die?

  2. Well done Trudy Ashworth! So many birds get tangled in fishing line, and it’s often impossible to help them. Thank you for your prompt action, your kindness and patience in taking the time to save this humble seagull.

  3. Last week a Southern right whale popped it’s head up next to a boat of fishermen in Middle Harbour Sydney. The whale had some plastic bags and fishing line in its mouth. The young guys were able to reach over the boat and remove the bag. You can check the selfies out online. Also check out Take3.org. and keep rubbish away from the rivers and sea as much as we can.


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