A tawny owl who was left completely covered in soot after he got stuck inside a wood burner has been rescued by the RSPCA.

The bird was rescued by an RSPCA inspector after a concerned homeowner contacted the animal charity about the bird’s plight on Sunday evening (19 November).

Inspector Kate Parker went to the house in Criftins, in Ellesmere, Shropshire, to rescue the bird.

She said: “The owl was completely trapped inside the flue of the wood burner and he may not have been found if the homeowners hadn’t have heard scratching.

“The only way I could get him out was very delicately – something which took 90 minutes. He looked a little worse for wear as he was completely covered in black soot. I got him to a vet to be checked over and thankfully he was not seriously injured.

“He’s now been taken to Cuan Wildlife Centre to be cleaned up and looked after until he can be released back into the wild.

“To think that the owl fell all the way from the roof and down the chimney and to not get any serious injuries is remarkable.”

If you spot an animal in distress or want to report suspected animal cruelty, please contact the RSPCA’s 24-hour emergency hotline by calling 0300 1234 999. For more guidance, visit our website.

To help the RSPCA continue rescuing, rehabilitating and rehoming animals in desperate need of care please visit our website.