Park authorities have published footage of a stag struggling with a discarded rubber inner tube stuck in its antlers amid a surge in littering at London's Royal Parks.

The footage, taken by authorities in Richmond Park recently, showed a stag attempting to feed with a rubber inner tube, previously discarded from a bike wheel, tangled tightly into his antlers.

Royal Parks said that the levels of litter in their parks increased massively during June, when the government announced an easing of lockdown measures designed to slow the spread of Covid-19 coronavirus.

In Richmond Park in particular, they said, rubbish left by visitors had increased 7-fold during June compared to last year's figures.

Richmond and Twickenham Times: Litter strewn at the entrance to Richmond Park. Image: Royal ParksLitter strewn at the entrance to Richmond Park. Image: Royal Parks

"Richmond Park saw a 7-fold increase in littering this June (from 6.64 tonnes left in June 2019 to 42 tonnes left in June 2020) – much greater than the other parks," a Royal Parks spokesperson detailed.

The Richmond Park data comes amid a rise across all eight of London's historical 'Royal' parks in recent weeks.

"Soaring lockdown littering levels led to an astonishing 258.4 tonnes of rubbish collected from London’s eight Royal Parks in June alone - the equivalent in weight of 20 new London buses, or 74 elephants," Royal Parks continued.

Those figures represented an increase of 32 per cent on the 2019 data according to park authorities.

"Now groups can gather, park managers have reported never-before-seen levels of littering on the grass every day, including plastic bags, pizza boxes, glass bottles, picnic items and PPE – there was even some office furniture and a Christmas Tree left in Kensington Gardens – with trash levels increasing on warm evenings and over sunny weekends," the statement from the park authorities said.

"This is despite increased numbers of bins in place, more frequent emptying to accommodate greater volumes of rubbish, and staff starting sometimes as early as 5am to ensure the parks are pristine when the majority of visitors arrive," they added.

In response, the park authorities said they were launching a 'Summer of Kindness' campaign in the hope of encouraging visitors to take their litter home with them or else make sure it's disposed or recycled correctly.

"It’s been truly fantastic to see more people enjoying our parks and getting closer to nature for a spot of R and R...particularly for those without gardens, but the downside is the litter," Tom Jarvis, director of parks at Royal Parks, said.

"We’ve never seen anything like this before. Every day we wake up to unprecedented levels of litter, with PPE, pizza boxes, plastic bags and picnic scraps strewn all over the grass.

"And we fear the worst is yet to come, with another spell of hot weather on the way," he added.

“So we’re asking everyone who visits the parks for a bit of help to spread some kindness this summer and help us look after the environment.

"Binning litter or taking it home will keep the parks beautiful places for everyone to enjoy – and will help ensure that our incredible wildlife continues to thrive and stay safe."