Hedgehog Found With Plastic Ring Embedded In Neck
A young hedgehog has been found with a plastic ring embedded in its neck, starkly illustrating the harmful effects of plastic pollution.
The tiny hedgehog, believed to be about six weeks old, was discovered in the Northumberland town of Bedlington after Blyth Wildlife Rescue received a call on Sunday, October 18.
It was clear that the plastic ring had been around its neck for some time, with the wounds deepening as the poor creature grew in size.
The rescue team set about removing the plastic, medicating the hedgehog and cleaning its wound while ‘removing maggots and fly eggs, dirt and debris’.
The following morning, the hog was given further treatment under anaesthetic by Blyth Wildlife Rescue vets, with the team said to be, ‘doing everything we can to help the hog recover’.
According to a statement from Blyth Wildlife Rescue:
Wildlife injuries caused by human carelessness are common and we see them regularly. From constriction wounds, entanglements, hooks down the throats of swans and gulls, fishing line and netting related injuries, we have seen it all and more.
Hopefully we got to this little hog in time but for many others, they weren’t so fortunate.
Pick up your litter. Reduce your waste. Look after our wildlife. Look after our home. There’s no Planet B.
The post was accompanied by photographs of the small hog, which included graphic photos of its injuries. Although the rescue centre noted these pictures were indeed upsetting, it explained ‘this is our reality’, and its clear the images have driven the issue home for a lot of people.
More than 70 people have donated to Blyth Wildlife Rescue through the original post, with many expressing their wishes for the hog to pull through and ‘live a long, happy life’.
Thankfully, it looks like the wounded hedgehog is a trooper, with a Facebook update from October 21 reporting it was making ‘good progress’ and was ‘surprisingly active’.
Giving a further update to UNILAD today, October 22, a representative from Blyth Wildlife Rescue said:
The hedgehog remains stable and we are hopeful for a full recovery.
The RSPCA reportedly receives an approximate 5,000 calls annually regarding litter, adding up to 14 calls every day about animals that have been affected by it.
Because pet owners will generally go directly to vets – and many injured wild animals are never even discovered – it’s believed the actual figure of animals injured by litter is far higher than the volume of calls would suggest.
The RSPCA recommends that people cut up their plastic can holder loops before recycling, to help reduce the number of animals who are injured or even killed by them.
Here’s wishing this brave little hedgehog a full recovery. Hopefully its story will help others think a little more carefully about where their disposed plastics end up.
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