Otter pup rescued from Suffolk sewage tank drowning

image copyrightRSPCA
image captionThe otter was covered in sewage and close to death when he was plucked to safety

A baby otter was saved from drowning in sewage after it fell into a storm tank.

The tiny 1.2kg (2lb 10oz) mammal had fallen 4.5m (15ft) at the sewage works near Stowmarket in Suffolk and could not get out.

Luckily a worker spotted him, scooped him out and called the RSPCA.

The "totally flat" otter was rushed to an RSPCA hospital in Norfolk. He was covered in sewage and close to death, the charity said, but staff hope he can eventually be released into the wild.

image copyrightRSPCA
image captionThe pup was rushed to the RSPCA's hospital in Norfolk

"I honestly thought he was going to die en route to our wildlife centre," Naemi Kilbey, from the charity, said. "He'd been washed into a storm tank and was covered in sewage.

"Thankfully, one of the workers spotted him and pulled him free before he drowned, but there was no sign of his mum anywhere."

The sewage-soaked pup was rescued on Monday morning and rushed to the RSPCA's wildlife centre in East Winch in Norfolk, where he is currently being cared for.

"He was much more lively by the time I left [him] and was even trying to take a bite out of the care assistant's finger," Ms Kilbey added. "It's always a good sign when they're feisty,"

image copyrightRSPCA
image captionThe otter was warmed up and cleaned up at the wildlife centre

However, centre manage Alison Charles said the otter was "not out of the woods yet".

Although he had been "nibbling on trout", she said otter cubs relied on their mothers "for a long time" so were "really difficult to rehabilitate".

image copyrightRSPCA
image captionStaff treating the pup hope he can be rehabilitated and released in the future

The process could take up to a year, but the charity is hopeful the sewage-survivor can eventually be released into the wild.

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