Rescue operation sees foal in a hole hoisted to safety
A major rescue operation swung into action after a foal became trapped when it fell down an open manhole.
The young colt wandered behind some trees where he stumbled into the hole, which was obscured.
The field backed on to a school in Rathoath, Co Meath, and the school caretaker was alerted by the frantic calls between the stricken foal and its distressed mother.
The alarm was raised and ISPCA inspector Elaine Whyte rushed to the scene.
Working with a local vet and volunteers, the major rescue operation then swung into action.
Sections of fencing were removed to give access to the area and a digger was brought in.
Straps were lowered into the hole and the foal was slowly and carefully hoisted up through the small opening.
The animal had suffered no major physical injury and was quickly reunited with his mother.
"This was an unfortunate accident," said Ms Whyte. "The hole was small and nearly impossible to see."
"I would like to thank all those involved in the rescue," the inspector said.
"Without their efforts, this positive outcome would not have been possible."
Further checks on the foal have shown that it is doing well and not suffering any ill-effects.