Litterbugs have been slammed after one of the famous Dartmoor ponies was found with a plastic carrier bag stuck to its face.
The young foal had a black bag trapped in its teeth after it had been apparently discarded by a walker on moorland near Plaster Down, Devon.
It was photographed by Pam Clifford, 68, who was out taking photographs of the wild ponies.
Retired Pam said the foal was no more than two weeks old and could have been killed if it had swallowed the bag, thought to have been left by a dog walker.
She criticised “reckless” litterbugs who leave rubbish on the moorland, risking the lives of the ancient wild ponies.
Pam, who volunteers with the Friends of the Dartmoor Hill Pony group, said: “I was angry and upset as to how people can bag and leave poo bags on the Moor.
“It is reckless, unsociable and disgusting to litter areas of outstanding beauty.
“If you take it there then you must take it home with you.
“Anything left on the moor by people is dangerous to livestock that live there and can be fatal.”
Records of Dartmoor Ponies in Devon date back more than 3,000 years.
In 1950 it is thought there were around 30,000 ponies on the moor, but now only around 1,500 remain.
The wild ponies roam the moorland in herds and are iconic for the area.
Pam says she tried to get close enough to the pony to take the bag from its out but had no luck.
She says a local pony keeper came to the rescue to remove bag, and said she went on to pick up 14 other black bags scattered across the grassland, on May 14.
Pam added: “We need to make people aware of what they leave behind.
“This is a nationwide problem.”