Seal left in 'untold pain' after plastic bag got stuck around his neg

Gnocchi, was found in Walton-on-the-Naze in March with a wound around his neck by the RSPCA and is since on the mend. 

Gnocchi was found in Walton-on-the-Naze in March with a wound around his neck by the RSPCA and is since on the mend. - Credit: RSPCA

A seal was rescued by the RSPCA in north east Essex after becoming trapped in a bag which cut into his neck. leaving him with a huge wound.

One of last year's grey pups, Gnocchi, was found in Walton-on-the-Naze in March with the wound around his neck.

The plastic bag found wrapped around Gnocchi in Walton-on-the-Naze in March

The plastic bag found wrapped around Gnocchi in Walton-on-the-Naze in March - Credit: RSPCA

When vets at East Winch Wildlife Centre, in Norfolk, first examined the pup they weren't quite sure what was causing the injury but after the seal was given pain relief and antibiotics they began work on removing the restriction from his neck. 

To their horror, the RSPCA said, they found it was a black plastic bag like a bin liner.

Gnocchi the seal is well and has been released back in the Sutton Bridge 

Gnocchi the seal is well and has been released back in the Sutton Bridge. - Credit: RSPCA

Gnocchi received weeks of care at the centre, as the wound was so deep it had become infected. He was given pain relief and antibiotics as well as regular salt baths.


You may also want to watch:


And on May, 17 he was released back to the wild from a site in the Sutton Bridge area.

Ben Kirby, manager at the centre, said: “Gnocchi’s injury had been caused by such an innocuous object - and this small plastic bag had caused him untold pain and injury and resulted in him needing weeks of care.

Gnocchi was rescued by the RSPCA from Walton-on-the-Naze in March

East Winch Wildlife Centre, in Norfolk, treated the seal's wounds after he was found in Walton-on-the-Naze in March - Credit: RSPCA

Most Read

“Thankfully he responded really well to his treatment and his wound healed quickly, so we were able to release him back to the wild.

“I must admit he didn’t hang around at the release location - as soon as he smelt the water he was off. It was good to see that he is really eager to return and we hope he continues to thrive now he is back in the wild.”

If you see an animal you have concerns about please call the RSPCA's emergency line on 0300 1234 999. Do not attempt to capture or handle an injured seal. 

Gnocchi was rescued by the RSPCA from Walton-on-the-Naze in March

Gnocchi was rescued by the RSPCA from Walton-on-the-Naze in March - Credit: RSPCA

In the last two years, the RSPCA has received 8,092 calls about animals injured or caught up in litter. That's an average of 11 incidents per day that the animal rescue charity knows about. 

 East Winch Wildlife Centre, in Norfolk

The plastic bag found wrapped around the seal's neck by East Winch Wildlife Centre, in Norfolk - Credit: RSPCA

The Great British Spring Clean has more details on how you can support animals through litter picking.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter
Comments powered by Disqus