Not so Fantastic Mr Fox gets into a jam

The trapped fox cub shortly before its release
The trapped fox cub shortly before its release

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THIS exhausted little fox cub spent 36 hours trapped in between two cavity walls before being rescued from the three inch gap.

Barney Rubble – as rescuer Buster Brown named him – was heard calling out for more than a day before the owner of the house in Emsworth discovered the noise was coming from his garage.

He called Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service who sent out animal rescue expert Buster to the property in Birch Tree Close.

Using chimney rods to try to measure how far in the gap the cub was stuck, he then had to remove bricks to get to the animal.

Buster said: ‘I’ve rescued three or four cats in similar circumstances and, believe it or not, a goat but never a fox cub.

‘He is obviously at the age where his mum didn’t want him in the den any more and he has gone off to find his own place to live and got stuck in here.

‘It was about 6in wide one end and down to 3in the other.

‘He was totally silent while I was rescuing him and it was quite tricky.

‘After I had taken the first few bricks I took a picture to see if I could see him in there.

‘He was well and truly stuck, his face was all twisted and lopsided.

‘Then I had a go but just couldn’t get my hand in to get him out.

‘It meant that, with the owners permission, I had to take more bricks out from behind him.

‘There was a load of debris and rubble in the gap I had to get out of the way first so that’s why I named him Barney Rubble.’

Eventually Buster managed to get the cub’s hind legs and the owner of the garage gently prodded him with the chimney rods to help ease him out.

The delicate operation took nearly two hours and part of the wall was taken off with a drill, hammer, bolster and chisel.

But despite its ordeal the fox cub emerged into the light uninjured.

Buster added: ‘It was quite lively, which was a good sign.

‘He wasn’t too lethargic, just a bit dehydrated.

‘I let it rest in my arms to make sure it was alright.

‘As soon as I put it down it scampered off under a tree.’

The rescue happened last Monday – a busy day for Buster. As reported in The News he had to rescue a horse which became trapped on a metal barrier when it tried to make a bolt from its stable at Southleigh Farm, in Havant.

Last year the animal rescue team attended incidents involving 350 animals.

large and small.