Dorset

Poole herring gull found skewered by arrow

skewered gull Image copyright RSPCA
Image caption The bird initially flew off with the arrow still embedded in its body

A herring gull has survived being shot with a 28-inch (71cm) arrow which passed through its body.

The injured bird flew off with the arrow still embedded when it was spotted in Poole, Dorset, on Sunday.

On Monday, it was captured and taken to an RSPCA clinic, where vets found an air gun pellet in the bird as well.

The arrow was removed and the charity has appealed for help in identifying the owner from its "distinctive green and black fletching".

Image copyright RSPCA
Image caption The gull was treated at an RSPCA clinic in Bournemouth
Image copyright RSPCA
Image caption X-rays revealed an air gun pellet in the bird's body

RSPCA Animal Welfare Officer Jo Blackburn captured the gull in Canford Cliffs Road after the charity was alerted by a "horrified" member of the public.

"A colleague was unable to catch the bird on Sunday as he was still flying, but on Monday, he was unable to lift off the ground," she said.

"The X-rays... show that the arrow has been shot straight through the bird and has been left deeply embedded into the upper body.

"Sadly the X-ray has shown there is also an air gun pellet in the bird as well, which is thought to have come from an earlier incident as there is no recent entrance wound."

The charity said the gull's attacker could face up to six months in prison and an unlimited fine.

Image copyright RSPCA
Image caption The RSPCA is hoping to identify the arrow through its "distinctive green and black fletching"

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