Strangely he actually did rescue the duckling alive from the dead herons stomach. But obviously he was then left with a dead heron.— RuralCrimeTeam™ (@NWPRuralCrime) March 26, 2018
You couldn't make this up! pic.twitter.com/8cVzB9r3YR
A man who killed a heron to rescue a duckling it had just swallowed has been cautioned by police.
North Wales Police tweeted that in saving the young bird, the elderly man from the Pwllheli area "was then left with a dead heron".
The force's Rural Crime Team added: "You couldn't make this up."
Officers said he shot the heron dead with an air gun, then cut it open to rescue the duckling, which was still alive in the heron's stomach.
Wildlife charity the RSPB said all birds were protected by law with fines or jail sentences issued for offences. The maximum penalties for killing a heron are a fine of up to £5,000, and up to six months in prison.
The man voluntarily confessed to the RSPB following the incident in 2017.
Police said he was given a minor punishment because he was regarded as vulnerable and had no previous convictions.