Ducklings stuck in a drain, a magpie trapped in a chimney and a kitten up a tree - these are just some of the instances in 2018 where the Berkshire fire service was called to help animals in tight spots.

Figures released from the Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service (RBFRS) show the authority’s firefighters had to untangle animals and pets from tricky situations on 92 occasions in the last year.

Cats were the animals most commonly caught in peril, with the RBFRS team having to attend to felines stuck on roofs, up a telegraph pole, or caught on a wire on 21 separate occasions.

Dogs needed assistance 14 times with one being caught with their head stuck under a fence, one finding itself stuck in a sofa and another having become trapped in a washing machine.

The authority rescued stranded pigeons on 10 occasions, unfortunate deers on nine instances, and horses needed help six times.

One dove needed saving after being caught in some netting and the authority was forced to rescue other birds seven other times, but The News can not confirm is any of these birds was another dove or a partridge stuck in a pear tree.

Steve Foye, Deputy Chief Fire Office at RBFRS, said: “We attend a relatively small number of incidents involving animals, accounting for just 1.07 per cent of callouts in 2018.

“We will very often provide advice to the caller on the phone and will not deploy an appliance.

“Our primary reason for attending such incidents is to minimise the risk to the public.

In particular we will often see people, such as animal owners, wanting to take risks with their own safety to rescue or help an animal in difficulty.

“We will support the RSPCA if they request us due to needing specific skills or equipment, but they would attend the majority of incidents themselves.”