'NOT an April Fools' Day joke': AFD saves squirrel stuck in tree

Austin Fire Department says it's gotten lots of animals out of trees, but this may be the first time an animal has actually been inside a tree.

In a Tweet Wednesday assuring that this is "NOT an April Fools' Day joke" AFD shared a video of a rescue of a squirrel who had gotten its head stuck in a tree.

AFD says just before 7:30 p.m on Tuesday, the A-shift crew from Engine 38 responded to a distraught 911 caller who had reported the case of a squirrel who had somehow managed to get his head lodged in the knothole of a tree and was unable to free himself.

"Whether squirrels have a 'reverse' gear remains a mystery, but said squirrel had found himself with his front half stuck inside the interior of the tree while his back half remained unprotected," said the department in a statement.



AFD said the caller was very concerned as the squirrel had apparently been there for some time.

"Now, we’ve gotten lots of animals out of trees before, but this may be the first time we’ve actually gotten an animal OUT of a tree. And as you can see from the video, shot by Firefighter Austin Konopik, it was no easy feat," said the department. 

AFD says firefighter Steven Slaughter would not be deterred; after a good two minutes of work, Steven and Firefighter Shane Burton managed to free the squirrel and send him on his way. The department believes the squirrel remained uninjured. 

The department says they don't even mind that the squirrel didn't stick around to say thank you:

"We’re always going to be there to come to the rescue of those who need it, whether they’ve got two legs or four."