A fisherman from Lincoln was the hero of the day when he stripped off and jumped into the water to rescue a mallard stuck on a tree and entangled in fishing line.
Luke Hutchinson, 20, is a member of the Lincoln & District Angling Association and has been carp fishing at Hartsholme Park for over five years.
At around 8am on Saturday, May 15 one of his rods was going off and he noticed the duck struggling in the river that feeds the lake at the park.
The duck had gone under the water to eat his bait, but then swam away. It got stuck by a tree on the other side of the lake and entangled in someone else’s discarded fishing line, meaning it was struggling to keep its head above water 10 feet from the bank.
Luke, who works in fishery management, stripped off and went to the other side of the lake where the duck was struggling before jumping into the water. He went into the water with just his underwear, scissors and a saw.
The mallard was exhausted after struggling to get free and could have drowned had it not been for Luke’s heroics. He sawed through the branch which the Mallard was entwined on and slowly pulled the duck to shore, with help from a few others who came to assist.
Once on the bank, Luke was able to fully take off the fishing line, while a hook was removed from its mouth by another man before the duck was able to fly off happily and land in the river.
Luke told The Lincolnite: “It was freezing, but I don’t like seeing animals struggle. I had to untangle the fishing line and keep it still as the duck was flapping around.
“I also had to saw some branches off the tree to be able to free the duck. I checked the duck over and untangled all the fishing line before it happily flew away.
“The duck was distressed and needed rescued and I like to look after nature. People need to take their rubbish and any fishing line home so that ducks don’t get stuck.”
Luke added that he has saved some other ducks before in other areas of the country and likes to look after nature.
Passer-by Joy Baker captured the rescue on video and described Luke as the “hero of the day”.
She said: “It was great to see. He must have been in the water for a good 45 minutes, it was freezing. He’s a talented fisherman and a very caring and brave young man.”