June to the rescue of duck out of luck

June Shaw helping to remove a camera lens hood from an Eider duck's neck
June Shaw helping to remove a camera lens hood from an Eider duck's neck
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AN animal lover went quackers at the chance to help out a duck in distress.

All of animal-mad June Shaw’s Christmases came at once when she took a trip to Washington Wetlands Centre and was able to help rescue a troubled duck.

June Shaw with the camera lens hood which she noticed around an Eider Duck's neck at the Washington Wetland Centre,  and then helped one of the wardens release the duck. She is pictured with centre manager Jane Ramshaw.

June Shaw with the camera lens hood which she noticed around an Eider Duck's neck at the Washington Wetland Centre, and then helped one of the wardens release the duck. She is pictured with centre manager Jane Ramshaw.

As the 57-year-old, and her 18-month-old granddaughter Molly Winter, were feeding the birds, she noticed one of them had a camera lens hood stuck round its neck.

She immediately alerted a warden who was able to get the duck out of the water.

But because of the way the duck had got its head stuck, the warden struggled to free it himself.

So June, of Albany, Washington, snapped up the chance to help out and dived straight into the rescue operation.

She said: “I noticed one of the eider ducks had a camera lens hood stuck around its neck, with its beak trapped downwards. It was flailing in the water and was very distressed.

“I’m a real animal fanatic, so I went to report it to the wardens.

“The warden arrived and he gently picked the duck up and tried to get the hood off, but it was totally stuck.

“I suggested I helped and we were able to free the duck of its unwanted necklace.

“My husband said after, knowing how much I love animals, that there was no way the warden was going to get it off if I was there.

“It would have totally ruined my day if we hadn’t got it off. Instead it made it because I was able to help rescue it.”

June is a regular visitor to the centre, taking a trip there at least three times a month.

And she was delighted when she got an annual membership for her Christmas present, with her rescue mission being the second trip she had taken using her card.

“It was lovely to be able to help like that,” she said.

Centre manager Jane Ramshaw has today thanked June for her help in rescuing the duck.

She said: “We health check the birds twice a day when we feed them, but things like this can happen.

“While our staff are always vigilant, we do rely on visitors to alert us of any problems like this so we can act quickly.

“This also highlights the importance of people being careful of dropping things around wildlife and the problems it can cause.”

Twitter: @sunechochief