Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Milford-on-Sea swans dragged under water by crabbing line

rescued swans Image copyright RSPCA
Image caption The swans had twine wrapped around their legs, wings, bodies and necks

Two swans have been saved from being drowned after they were dragged under the water by discarded fishing litter.

The RSPCA said the "distressed" birds were discovered at Sturt Pond in Milford-on-Sea, Hampshire, on 27 May.

Both of them had crabbing line wrapped around their legs, wings, bodies and necks.

One of the swans also had a hook stuck in its chest feathers but it had not pierced the skin, the charity said.

RSPCA inspector Patrick Bailey said: "They were clearly becoming waterlogged and it became apparent that they were tangled together and then attached to something beneath the water.

Image copyright RSPCA
Image caption The birds are now recovering at an animal rescue centre

"Both of them were at a real risk of being injured or drowning, as they became increasingly entangled and exhausted."

He added the plastic handle at the end of the twine had accumulated so much weed and silt "it became a solid, heavy mass".

The pair are now recovering at Stubbington Ark Animal Rescue Centre before being released back into the wild.

The RSPCA has urged people to dispose of their litter responsibly.

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