RSPCA issue warning over netting after freeing seagull which became trapped at South Shields Barclays building

A seagull had to be rescued from a five story building in South Shields by fire officers after becoming trapped in netting as the RSPCA issue a warning about maintaining netting on buildings.

Wednesday, 13th April 2022, 2:52 pm

The RSPCA was alerted to the trapped seagull, which was tangled up in netting at Barclays Bank, in King Street, by a member of the public on Monday (April 11) and fortunately the gull managed to survive his ordeal without major injury.

Fire officers from Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service used a platform to reach the bird, which the RSPCA claims highlights the dangers posed when protective netting placed around structures is not checked regularly for signs of wear and tear.

RSPCA inspector Suzanne Edgar attended the incident and saw the bird fighting frantically to break free of the netting, before it was reached by the firefighters.

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She said: “Luckily this gull is okay and he will be released back into the wild, but some of them are not so lucky.

“When there is wear and tear on netting it is very easy for birds to get in through a gap or hole and get stuck. He had been stuck there all morning and thankfully someone called the RSPCA. The fire service deployed officers who specialise in animal rescues and they used a platform to reach the gull.”

Firefighters cut the netting from around the bird, which had a minor cut to its body, but thankfully had not broken any wings.

Firefighters free the trapped seagull

The bird is now in the care of Sunderland animal shelter Pawz for Thought and will later be released back into the wild.

Suzanne added: “We get a lot of issues with netting trapping gulls in the South Shields, Sunderland and Newcastle areas.

“Most businesses do listen to us and do get their netting repaired. But at some premises birds keep on getting trapped.”

Geoff Watson, Barclays Customer Care Director said: "We were alerted by the RSPCA on Monday and thankfully the fire brigade were able to rescue the trapped bird.

Firefighters free the trapped seagull

“We do take animal welfare seriously and we have raised the issue with our premises team who will conduct an inspection and remedy any issues we might find."

If you see an animal entangled or trapped, contact the RSPCA’s cruelty and advice helpline on 0300 1234 999.

Seagull trapped on the roof of Barclays Bank on Kings Street, South Shields