It took four hours, three fire trucks, a boat, a team of people and an excavator to rescue a bull from the river in Glen Oak on Thursday.
Ben the bull had fallen down an embankment into the nearby river and could not get himself out. Local farmers found him after a long, wet night in the water and thought it would be a matter of pushing him back up the hill, but Ben had other ideas.
Neighbours were called in to help and came by boat to push Bill towards shore, but the hill proved too steep. Vets were called in, three Rural Fire Service crews and animal welfare officers attended to try and get the big bull out of the water.
RFS crews from Dungog, Clarence Town and Seaham thought about winching the animal to safety. In the end a farmer drove his excavator over to save the day. He built a temporary ramp and with a prod from the boat crew, Ben ran up to safety.
The bull was treated to a well deserved hay biscuit afterward and was reunited with his mate Bill the bull.
Witnesses said it was a great community effort.