THIS is the moment a rare bird was found on the beach.

Paddle-boarder Harvey Klee came across an Atlantic puffin, pictured above, struggling on Brighton seafront and decided to step in to help.

He said: “I thought it was a pigeon at first.

“But I realised when I got closer that it was a puffin.

“He kept flapping on the sea.

“I’m not sure the seagulls would have ever seen one so I’m sure they were taken aback.

“They kept diving on him.”

Concerned for the rare bird’s safety, Harvey took the puffin to Roger’s Wildlife Centre in Downs Valley Road, Brighton.

Roger Musselle, who runs the centre along with his wife Fleur, has spent years taking in sick or injured animals and nursing them back to health.

And despite having tended to all kinds of wildlife, even Roger was taken aback by seeing the puffin come in.

He said: “I’ve never had a puffin come in.

“I thought it was very unusual when Harvey called in about it.

“There are breeding colonies in Yorkshire and Dorset.

“He may have just got lost.

“They are only usually found on the south coast washed up dead, so it’s very rare to find a live one.”

Roger tended to the puffin and made sure he had no injuries.

He said that the bird appeared to be fine and that he would hopefully not have to stay at the centre for much longer.

He added: “There were no major injuries.

“His wings and legs are fine and he’s back eating fish… and my fingers.

“I now how strong their beaks are

“I’m not planning to keep it more than 24 hours and then I’ll let it back into the sea.”

The Atlantic puffin is the only puffin native to the Atlantic Ocean, and is often referred to as the common puffin.

They are recognisable by their black crown and back, white face and front and colourful orange beak.

The birds are most commonly found in the north of the country, around Scotland, and further north to Scandinavia and Iceland.

They spend most of their lives at sea and live for an average of 20 years in the wild, grow to about ten inches tall and weighting about 17 ounces.