On July 29, New York State Department of Environment (NYSDEC) Environmental Conservation Police Officer Chris Amato responded to a call of an osprey caught in fishing line in a tree on West Meadow Beach in Stony Brook. A person on the bike path led ECO Amato to the bird, which turned out to actually be two ospreys entangled and hanging upside down from a tree branch about 20 feet off the ground. ECO Amato was able to get to the branch and cut it from the tree. With the help of ECO Kyle Bevis and a good Samaritan, the birds were then cut free from the fishing line and taken to an animal emergency hospital. The veterinarian there believed that the birds had been caught for several days, as one bird had gangrene in one foot and the other required a toe removed. Both are expected to survive with proper care. Fishermen and boaters should be aware that the garbage they leave behind can cause harm to wildlife. DEC recommends fishermen discard old fishing line in the trash so birds do not become easily entangled.
– news release from the Aug. 7 New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Environmental Conservation Officer web page.