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jjeling
05-21-2010, 12:42 PM
I was fishing in a pond at the marina. After a little while I noticed this bird following me, which is all too familiar. This one was acting a little different. A lot of the ducks at the pond will follow you but usually from a distance. Chips, bread, and foods of the nature will usually get you a close encounter. However, there was no food necessary here. This guy was begging for help. He kept drawing closer, so I stopped what I was doing to get a feel for the situation hoping he would trust me. At the time, I was away from my camera, nets, pliers or anything else. A few steps closer and I realized issue. He was tangled up in a fishing lure. This was not just any lure. This had two sets of treble hooks. The first were embedded deep into the rear part of his neck. The second set were clamped around his beak with one point actually piercing his beak preventing any movement of hes neck or beak. He moved with extreme effort. Nothing was easy anymore. Malnourished, he had to put his whole head underwater and lean it back like a cup in order to drink.

As I walked back to my tackle box and nets, I was still being followed. Taking a picture first, I then grabbed my pliers and net. The effort didnt last long. He promptly moved into the water and prevented further injury from our kind. Maybe he wasn't asking for help. It might have been a protest and a sign telling me what Ive done to him and others like him. He might not have let me helped him, but there was a message in there somewhere.

Clearly it was a floating lure. The bird saw it on top of the water and thought it was food. After being opportunistic as they are, it would have been an easy meal, except lures are made to catch fish not birds. Was this my lure? Where did this happen? Not sure, but it did make me stop and think about how many times a fish has broken my line with this type of lure on it. Hooks are generally made to rust out of a fishes mouth if that happens preventing the fish from dying. However, if a fish shakes it out of his mouth before that happens, a whole new possibilities are possible.

So, next time you are fishing, just know that fish are not the only ones being caught. I probably lost hundreds of lures like this. Sometimes we just need to realize the potential consequences of our actions. Things do not always go as intended.

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3374/4625823959_1d8e4386d7_b.jpg

JAS_Photo
05-21-2010, 01:01 PM
Nice photo, jj! Glad you could help the little guy. Funny how he could sense that he could get help from you. It makes me very sad to see this kind of thing.
Lots of people out there are downright cruel to birds and animals because they are annoying and loud like seagulls are, but that is not a reason to mistreat living creatures. Seeing this sort of thing just makes me cry. :(

jjeling
05-21-2010, 01:05 PM
JAS, that was the hard part. I couldnt help him. He just kept his distance from me once I got the net out. I think he was afraid I would injure him even more.

JAS_Photo
05-21-2010, 01:07 PM
Awww... sorry to hear.

Marko
05-21-2010, 01:12 PM
awww man - I was hoping for a happy ending...good on you for trying tho.

Kawarthabob
05-21-2010, 03:06 PM
that happened to me once a few years back . I had only casted out once and as it hit the water a gull swooped down and took my zara spook. I yanked it out mid flight and then packed my tackle and went home. didn't much feel like fishing after that.

casil403
05-21-2010, 05:28 PM
I've seen this before out in Victoria when I lived there. A gull was walking around the parking lot with the lure and the line wrapped around his mouth...we couldn't catch it and it couldn't fly very much anymore but it managed to keep eluding us. So I went home and called the SPCA to let them know about it. I still wonder what happened to the gull to this day and that was almost 20 years ago. Your photo brought me right back to that moment. It was disturbing then and seeing your shot brought back those memories of the poor thing.

Mad Aussie
05-21-2010, 05:35 PM
I've been there too. Nice shot and story JJ.

Hillbillygirl
05-24-2010, 08:18 AM
Hope this poor fella' makes it.:sad: