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09/06/2016, 17:00

Seagull in curry. Wanna try some?

A hungry seagull had an accidental makeover after it fell into a huge vat of chicken tikka masala curry - and came out dyed bright orange.

The bird swooped down onto a container of 'waste' curry that had been left to cool outside a factory in Wales.

Perched on the side, it was trying to fish out bits of meat when it slipped and tumbled into the sauce.

Thankfully, workers found the beleaguered Herring seagull and handed it over to rescuers from animal charity animal charity Vale Wildlife Hospital and Rehabilitation Centre. 

A hungry seagull ended up bright orange, pictured, after falling into a vat of chicken tikka masala curry

The bird, pictured, had swooped onto a container of 'waste' curry outside a factory in Wales when it lost its balance and fell into the sauce

It had to be thoroughly cleaned to stop the curry damaging his feathers and is now being nursed back to full-health at the centre near Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, until it can be released back into the wild.

The colour of tikka masala comes from a mix of spices, including turmeric, which has a yellow pigment and tomato puree and paprika, which give off a red colour.

Mixed together they create a natural orange food colouring, which spread over and stained the bird's white feathers when it fell into the vat.

Lucy Kells, Veterinary Nurse at the Vale Wildlife Hospital, said: 'The gull is doing great now - he still smells a little of curry, but he is now much whiter.

'On Monday the receptionist bought a box through and said 'this one needs urgent attention.'

'The strong curry aroma actually hit us before we opened the box. It was absolutely overwhelming and I thought 'that smells absolutely fantastic.'

'The gull didn't actually seem too upset but we had to give him a shower and clean him with washing up liquid. Surprisingly, he was actually very well behaved.

It was saved by staff at the factory and handed over to the Vale Wildlife Hospital and Rehabilitation Centre

The charity, based in Gloucestershire, gave the Herring gull a thorough wash to return it to a normal colour

'It took about half an hour and the curry came out better than we expected, but he still smells! I think it must be the turmeric.'

'Of course we don't like to laugh at animals, but because the gull was okay it was hard not to see the funny side.'

Miss Kells, 41, from Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, added: 'The gull was fishing for bits of chicken and lost his balance.

'One of our rescuers came and picked him up from the factory after they had pulled him out and put him in a box.

'We can't name the factory but staff informed me it was a waste vat of chicken tikka masala.'

The charity wildlife hospital will take care of the gull for a few more weeks or months until he can be released back into the wild in Wales.

Miss Kells added: 'We've been making sure he doesn't have an upset tummy.

'We want to make sure he is eating well as it's always a worry when an animal has ingested something quite spicy.

Nurses at the centre say the gull, pictured, is doing well after its ordeal but that it still smells strongly of curry

Staff were concerned over its stomach due to it ingesting spicy food, but believe it will make a full recovery

'He has been okay up to now though, so maybe he has a strong stomach.

'Gulls eat all sorts of things, but I expect this one has probably been put off curry now.

'The main worry when a gull has been coated in a substance is that they are no longer waterproof, so we give them plenty of time here to recover.' 

 

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