A frog that travelled more than 4,000 miles on a bunch of bananas was among the RSPCA’s most “weird and wonderful” animal rescues of 2022.
The charity said its officers had been called to animal incidents ranging from seal pups on cliffs to foxes who had got their heads stuck in various objects – and a 5ft-long boa constrictor found in a McDonald’s restaurant.
Among the first animals to be rescued in 2022 was Nacho, a six-month-old seal pup discovered next to a riverbank by a pub in Keynsham, Bristol, in January.
Two days later another seal pup was found on a cliff in Weybourne, Norfolk, 50ft from the beach.
The charity was called out to a fox trapped in a watering can in Colchester, Essex, in February, and another fox found with a large can of dog food in Barking, London.
RSPCA inspector Dale Grant said it was a warning of “how dangerous litter can be”.
Several foxes caught themselves in the central hole of old wheels, including a cub which had found its way into a shed in Orpington, southeast London, in April.
The residents had also discovered his sister in the shed, anxiously watching her brother, rescuer Rodney Kenny said.
He said there was “no time to spare” as it was likely the fox had been stuck for days without food or water, but it was quickly removed with soapy water and both cubs were taken into care.
Boa constrictor slithers through McDonald’s
In July, customers eating at a McDonald’s in Bognor Regis, West Sussex, were confronted by a 5ft-long boa constrictor slithering through the restaurant.
The non-venomous snake was passed on to staff and placed in a box before it was collected by the RSPCA.
In August, RSPCA rescuers used barbecue tongs to pull a hedgehog from an open drain in Hull, East Yorkshire.
Then in September, the fire service was called after another hedgehog fell 25ft into a historic ice house on the Dawnay Estates near Scarborough, North Yorkshire.
‘Sorry, there’s a what in the bananas?’
The RSPCA was called in September after a Hispaniolan common tree frog travelled 4,300 miles from the Dominican Republic in the Caribbean to the UK on a bunch of bananas.
Iain Holloway, from Tamworth, Staffordshire, said: “We were unpacking the shopping in the kitchen and my wife turned to me and said ‘look there’s a frog in the bananas’ and I said ‘sorry, there’s a what in the bananas?'”
Rescuer Jonny Wood said the frog was in good condition despite the long journey.
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Dermot Murphy, from the RSPCA, said: “With our teams out rescuing animals from danger and suffering 365 days a year, we are often their only hope.
“It’s an honour to be able to lend a hand to animals in desperate need and we hope people enjoy seeing some of the weird and wonderful places animals have found themselves in need of our help.”
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