SHOCKING images show an owl that was rescued from starving to death after he became entangled in a discarded kite.
The long-eared owl was found hanging from a tree, upside down after wrapped up in a piece of kite wire in Southerness, Dumfries and Galloway yesterday (thur) afternoon.
Images show the thin piece of string wrapped more than a dozen times around one of the bird’s feathers.
Another heartbreaking photo shows the same piece of string tangled in knots around the his claws – restricting its ability to fly and hunt.
The poorly owl was left bruised and in pain from the kite which is likely to have been thrown away or let go off in the air.
The South of Scotland Wildlife Hospital in Dumfries, who have been looking after the owl, have now urged kite-flyers to stop dumping their equipment.
Sharing images of the stunning animal last night (thur), they said: “Late this afternoon we were brought this beautiful long eared owl after it was rescued by the SSPCA.
“They did a fantastic job untangling this mess without damaging the bird’s delicate bones.
“Its feathers, as you can imagine are pretty messed up and it’s sore and bruised.
“This should never have happened.
“Someone decided it was a great idea to discard of their kite and this poor owl is paying the price.
“We are constantly hearing of not only wildlife but people’s livestock being injured or killed due to people dumping things like kites and balloons.”
They added: “Please be responsible and ensure all rubbish is disposed of properly.”
The post has attracted dozens of comments from animal lovers with many branding the culprit “careless”.
Athene Strigidae said: “How sad and how very shameful.
“One person’s careless thoughtlessness causing so much suffering. You wonder if they knew the harm they’ve caused if they’d care at all?”
Sarah Johnstone wrote: “That is so sad, what a gorgeous owl. You do such amazing work.”
Nicola Smith said: “What a beauty. Well done untangling that nasty mess.”
And Catriona Carvey wrote: “Poor owl. I hope it makes a full recovery.”
Lorna Kempsell, manager at South of Scotland Wildlife Hospital, today (fri) said: “We see this all the time. It’s not only kite strings, but balloons too. They’re deadly to wildlife.
“They can break their wings. This guy has been very lucky. He was found hanging in a tree upside down, tangled up in the string.
“I’ve just been examining him now, his feathers seem okay but I’m still finding bits of string.
“Wildlife have a huge tolerance so they won’t show they are in pain. It’s fight or flight for them so if they show this, they could become a target.”