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Gannet rescued by Lifeboat Crew

Lifeboats News Release

Kinghorn RNLI Lifeboat was called out at 5.10pm on Sunday following a report of a rowing boat which was possibly in difficulty, off Portobello.

The lifeboat undertook a search of the area, along with Fisherrow Coastguard Rescue Team, but it was soon established that the rowing boat had made it ashore, and there had not been any issue.
On arrival back in Kinghorn Bay, the crew spotted a gannet which appeared distressed in the water. On closer inspection, it was found to be tangled in string with another bird, which was dead.
Crewmember, Neil Chalmers explained, ‘We spotted the bird which appeared to be dragging an object. Unfortunately, this turned out to be a dead gannet, which had been tangled with the live bird, due to green polypropylene string.
‘The lifeboat was manoeuvred alongside the birds, and they were brought onboard. The two birds were separated, and the live gannet brought ashore.
‘The string was removed from around its wing, and it was kept calm whilst the Scottish SPCA attended the boat house to take the bird away to their Fishcross facility for further treatment.
‘This was a great example of teamwork to get the boat alongside, and then to get the birds into the boat, without further injury to the gannet, or the crew. It was still keen to peck and bite!’
Kinghorn lifeboat station is manned entirely by volunteers, and the station has a busy summer ahead. Preparations are well underway for our Open Day on Saturday 16th July.
Notes to editors
  • Kinghorn lifeboat station has been operating since 1965. To learn more about the lifeboat station go to
  • Photo shows the gannet with crewmembers
RNLI media contacts
For more information, please telephone Neil Chalmers, RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer on 07767 380274 or or Richard Smith on 07786 668903 or at Henry Weaver on 07771 943026 or at or contact RNLI Public Relations on 01202 336789.

Key facts about the RNLI

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is the charity that saves lives at sea. Our volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service in the United Kingdom and Ireland from 238 lifeboat stations, including four along the River Thames and inland lifeboat stations at Loch Ness, Lough Derg, Enniskillen, Carrybridge and Lough Ree. Additionally the RNLI has more than 1,000 lifeguards on over 240 beaches around the UK and operates a specialist flood rescue team, which can respond anywhere across the UK and Ireland when inland flooding puts lives at risk.

The RNLI relies on public donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. As a charity it is separate from, but works alongside, government-controlled and funded coastguard services. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824 our lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved at least 140,000 lives. Volunteers make up 95% of the charity, including 4,600 volunteer lifeboat crew members and 3,000 volunteer shore crew. Additionally, tens of thousands of other dedicated volunteers raise funds and awareness, give safety advice, and help in our museums, shops and offices.

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