Fox on football pitch entangled in left over net

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A fox had a lucky escape after it became entangled in a goalkeepers net left on a school playing field.

The fox was seen in the field at Sandy Upper School by concerned residents who reported it to the RSPCA.

Katherine Baxter told the Chronicle: “I live over the back of the school field and noticed from my upstairs window that a fox was very badly entangled within the football net.

“I immediately called the RSPCA who managed to cut him out with great difficulty. I spoke to the RSPCA who suggested lifting the nets after every game to prevent this from happening again and I have written to the school to try and ask them to enforce this.

Katherine added: “It took the RSPCA around 30 minutes to cut the fox out as he was very entangled but this was with two others helping and gently holding the fox whilst the RSPCA officer Cherry cut him free.

“The fox was rescued around 10.30am this morning. He had obviously been there since the night time and was very tired and distressed.

“When the fox was cut loose he ran fast into the trees. A happy ending this time but not always the case with football entrapment wildlife the officer said.

A spokesman from the RSPCA said: “Tennis, football and badminton nets are often set up and left unattended in gardens and parks with many people not realising they can be death traps for wildlife.

“The RSPCA urges those using netting for sports to remove and store all nets after their game of tennis or football, and any discarded netting is safely placed in a bin.

“Other forms of garden netting, like pond or fruit netting, can be a real hazard to wild animals like hedgehogs and the RSPCA recommends replacing these with solid metal mesh.”