A deer had to be rescued from an old swimming pool filled with rainwater after being spotted by a man about to mow his lawn.
The stag was freed by two RSPCA colleagues pulling on his antlers and heaving the animal to safety.
As they pulled, the 60kg animal pushed off from the bottom and that momentum helped the deer to clear the side of the pool.
The deer was only able to reach the bottom of the old pool, at a home in Ibsley, Hampshire, because some of the collected rainwater had evaporated in the summer heatwave.
The animal was first spotted when the homeowner went outside on the morning of August 3.
But the animal could have been in the water overnight. A herd of about 40 deer had been seen in the garden the night before and the pool isn’t visible from the home.
When the resident saw the stricken deer, he called the RSPCA and Inspector Patrick Bailey and animal collection officer Karen Gregor attended and worked together to free the animal.
“We grabbed an antler each and hauled him out. He was very heavy and it was tricky to lift him up and out in order to clear the edge of the pool and avoid injuring him.
“Luckily, the deer pushed off of the floor in an effort to jump giving us enough momentum to pull him up and out.”
The stag appeared tired after his ordeal – and a little wobbly at first – but was otherwise well. He wandered off into the surrounding countryside once he found his feet.