The RSPCA is warning people about the danger that fly paper poses to wildlife, after a swallow died after getting stuck to one.

The animal welfare charity was called to rescue the bird from a stable in Ridge End, in Marple, Stockport, on Tuesday (5 September).

Sadly, the swallow had to be put to sleep as a result of injuries sustained from being stuck to the paper.

RSPCA animal welfare officer Steve Wickham said: “When I arrived, the bird was desperately trying to free himself from the sticky paper. One of his wings had gotten stuck to the paper and he looked exhausted. We don’t know how long he had been there for but he could have been struggling for hours.

“Very sadly, he was badly injured and was put to sleep to prevent further suffering.”

Glue tape – also known as ‘fly paper’ or ‘sticky paper’ – consists of a sheet of tape coated with non-drying adhesive. The RSPCA sees many different types of animals trapped in fly paper and on glue traps.

“Many people will not actually realise quite how sticky fly paper is and it can cause horrific injuries to wildlife,” said Steve.

The RSPCA is opposed to the manufacture, sale and use of all glue traps because they cause unacceptable suffering to all species which fall victim to them.

He added: “When animals come across a glue trap board they start to struggle, which can lead to other parts of their body then becoming stuck. In attempting to get free they may rip out patches of fur, break bones and even gnaw through their own limbs to escape. Glue traps are inhumane and indiscriminate and we urge people to think twice before using one.”

To help the RSPCA continue rescuing, rehabilitating and rehoming animals in desperate need of care please visit or text LOVE to 87023 to give £3 (Text costs £3 + one standard network rate message).