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Picture of the week: Donkey work saves Mike from storm

By Kerry McKittrick

Mike the donkey shares a toothy grin with Suzanne Gibbon in Killorglin, Co Kerry after his dramatic rescue from flood waters in the wake of Storm Desmond.

It was a close call for Mike after a river burst its banks in the Republic and the water swept away the door to his shed, allowing him to escape overnight.

By the time the donkey was discovered - stranded in a field on Sunday morning - the flood waters were rising dangerously around him. Mike's owner called on local charity Animal Haven Animal Rescue, which issued a call on social media for a boat and assistance to rescue the stricken animal.

A member of the local Killorglin Rowing Club, Mike Fleming, rose to the occasion along with two volunteers. They managed to get close to the terrified animal and put a buoyancy aid and rope around its neck before towing him safely to dry land - his owner watching helpless all the while.

The donkey - previously unnamed - has been now christened Mike in honour of his brave rescuer and is now recovering safely at the AHAR shelter.

Miraculously, other than a small amount of water in one of his lungs, Mike was unharmed and will make a full recovery at the shelter while the flood waters recede. He will be returned to his owner when new accommodation has been prepared for him.

Storm Desmond has spent the last week battering the UK and Ireland, causing widespread flooding. Hundreds of families have seen Christmas ruined as the flood waters have destroyed presents and the interiors of their homes. Three people have lost their lives in accidents caused by the storm.

Northern Ireland has continued to see wet and windy weather throughout the week - although the Met Office says the worst effects have now passed.

This weekend's weather isn't expected to be as stormy as last weekend's, but there will be rain showers and snow in high places.

Belfast Telegraph


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