A DISTRESSED owl found dangling from an overhead telephone wire this morning has been taken to safety thanks to firefighters and the local community.

The alarm was raised at 6.15am and when Ronnie Goldwater, Station Manager with West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, arrived at the scene in Menston, he found the tawny owl "tethered to the phone line by an identity lanyard".

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Jarrod Stoney, Bradford Fire Service and Ronnie Goldwater, West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue station managerJarrod Stoney, Bradford Fire Service and Ronnie Goldwater, West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue station manager

Mr Goldwater said: “I got a call to go to Menston because someone had seen an owl hanging upside and tangled in an overhead wire.

“It was a sad sight when I got there. It was in distress and the neighbours told me it had been there a few hours and ringing the fire service was the last chance to get it down.

"Somehow it was attached to the wire by an identity lanyard and its wing.”

Mr Goldwater said he asked for assistance from Bradford Fire Station, which provided an aerial appliance and "one of the lads went up, took a blanket up and managed to get it down".

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Fire appliance at the sceneFire appliance at the scene

“But when it got down, the bird kind of shut down, I’d never seen anything like it. I think it was the stress and being out in the rain for hours, but it wasn’t nice to see,” he said.

Animal rehabilitation volunteer Vikki Clarke had seen posts on social media of the ordeal and got in touch with her local fire station - Cookridge in Leeds - to find out if she could help.

“It was fantastic because Vikki had seen it on social media and asked if she could help. So she came along and took it to the vets," Mr Goldwater said.

“By this time, we’d called him Tony the tawny owl, and the vet happened to be a falconer so he is in the best hands."

It is hoped once the bird has made a full recovery it will be released back into the area.