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Merritt Island man rescues drowning osprey in canal during storm

Man grabbed osprey with pool cleaner

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MERRITT ISLAND, Fla. – A Merritt Island man rescued an osprey that was drowning in a canal during a storm, and his wife caught the entire thing on video.

The man, identified only as Damian, spotted the osprey in the canal frantically looking for a way out. He quickly ran and grabbed his pole cleaner, extending the pole out to the bird.

When the distressed bird saw Damian reaching the pole out to help her, she began to swim toward him. She eventually reached the pole and on the second or third try Damian was able to lift the bird out of the water.

After the bird was saved, Damian called WILD Florida Rescue to take the bird in for rehabilitation.

"The rescue could not be more beautiful if my team had done it themselves," Heather Pepe from Florida Wildlife Hospital in Brevard wrote on Facebook. "I feel emotional about it. I don't know if it's thankful, proud, relieved or maybe just the silent desperation of an animal, the effort of man and the chance she took by depending on him. Trust."