HIKONE, Shiga -- A spot-billed duck whose bill was wrapped with packing tape was found by a man on the balcony of his third-floor apartment here in western Japan on the morning of July 14.
The man in his 50s called the police to report the incident at around 9:40 a.m. on the same day.
The Shiga Prefectural Police's Hikone Police Station suspects that the duck may have fled its captor. The hunting period for the wild bird is currently out of season in the prefecture. Investigators are examining the possibility of a violation of the Protection and Control of Wild Birds and Mammals and Hunting Management Law.
According to the police station, the bill of the duck -- whose body measures about 40 centimeters in length -- was wrapped twice with the tape and its body was tied by string. The duck was released by police at Lake Biwa in the center of the prefecture, the largest lake in Japan, after a health check.
The annual hunting season for spot-billed ducks in the prefecture is from Nov. 15 to Feb. 15.
(Japanese original by Koichi Nishimura, Hikone Local Bureau)