A fledgling gull has died after being skewered by a kebab stick.

The RSPCA is urging people to dispose of their rubbish responsibly after the fledgling gull was found with a wooden kebab skewer through his body in Bristol.

The animal welfare charity was called to help the stricken gull, who’d been discovered in Alma Road in Clifton on July 23 with several inches of the stick embedded inside him.

RSPCA animal collection officer Gary Lucas rescued the bird before taking him to the clinic at Bristol Animal Rescue Centre.

Gary said: “Sadly this poor gull didn’t make it but I hope that this will make people think carefully about how they dispose of their rubbish.”

The RSPCA has received more than 21,600 reports of animals injured or caught in litter over the past five years.

The animal welfare charity’s frontline officers are regularly called to help cats, birds and other wildlife who have got themselves tangled in netting, injured in fishing litter or stuck in rubbish.

Read more: Illegal trap snares fox, leaving it hanging (and the trap was set deliberately)

Recently they’ve helped a gull whose legs had become tangled in a disposable facemask and a fox with her head stuck in a plastic bottle.

South West Farmer:

Over the past five years (2015-2019), the RSPCA’s emergency hotline in England and Wales has received 6,466 calls about animals affected by general litter - like tin cans, plastic bottles and elastic bands.

There have also been 15,183 reports relating to animals injured or caught in angling litter.

There have been a further 12,904 reports of animals and birds trapped in netting, which includes netting discarded as rubbish but this also includes sports netting or netting put on bushes,trees and buildings to deter birds.

Head of the RSPCA’s wildlife team Adam Grogan said: “Litter is one of the biggest hazards our wildlife faces today - and it’s something that’s very easy to resolve. That’s why we’re calling on the public to take extra care to clear up after they’ve been out for a walk or enjoyed a picnic in the woods.

“Now that the government has eased some of the lockdown restrictions, we’re sure lots of families will be out and about in nature. But it’s our job to protect nature and that includes properly and responsibly disposing of our litter so that animals can’t be hurt.”

“If members of the public see discarded litter we would encourage them to pick it up safely and put it in the bin, remembering to wash their hands after. Their action could save an animal’s life.”

If you’re concerned about the welfare of an animal, call the RSPCA’s emergency hotline on 0300 1234 999.