May 25, 2010
Firemen Free Line-Wrapped Osprey
By Chad Love
Here's a good reminder of why you should always, always pack out not just your discarded fishing line, but any discarded line you come across.
From the story in the Willamete Valley Statesman-Journal:
At first, the call to Salem Fire Department sounded like a prank: an osprey in a nearby tree was stuck. A bird was stuck in a tree? "We got there and realized, it actually was a bird stuck in a tree," said Salem firefighter Jeremy Tinney. "It was kind of weird." Sometime on Sunday afternoon, the osprey became tangled in fishing line and tackle and then flew to the top of a 50-foot pine tree, where the line became ensnared in the branches. Nearby, patrons of the Thai Fusion and Bigfoot Lounge in the 3300 block of Commercial Street SE became alarmed and called for help.
"He was just hanging by the tip of one wing and just flopping his wings, trying to get loose," Tinney said. Tinney and his fellow fire crew from Salem Fire Ladder Engine 4 set up their ladder to extend to the top of tree, maneuvering the ladder bucket to reach the osprey. Tinney could see the bird was hanging from one wing, stretched out sort of sideways.
"He wasn't very happy with us," Tinney said. "He kept trying to grab us with his talons." Tinney ˜ who admitted his experience with birds extends only to chickens ˜ wore his full firefighting turnout and gloves to hold the bird while the tangled branch was cut off. The firefighters untangled the fishing line and tackle, and then kept the bird in a pet kennel while waiting for volunteers to arrive from Turtle Ridge Wildlife Center.