TREVOR WEEKS - Busy week sees a number of casualties released into wild

trevor weeks - SE 01-03-13
trevor weeks - SE 01-03-13

This has certainly been the busiest week for rescues in a long time so I would like to thank all our rescuers for working hard this week and for spreading the workload out. Well done to everyone for all their help.

Tony and Dave went to Hampden Park lake to deal with a Canada Goose on the island which was very poorly. Tony had to use a pump-up inflatable boat to get to the island. The goose gave him a bit of a run around but he managed it and the goose was rowed back to the bank for care. The goose was very emaciated and its feather condition was poor too. As we can’t release these geese back to the wild the goose was taken up to the Swan Sanctuary for treatment and to find a new home.

Our assistant manager Kate was allowed out of the centre this week to release two birds of prey back to the wild. There was a Kestrel and a Sparrowhawk. Both of them have only been in for a fairly short period of time.

One was from Herstmonceux and the other Eastbourne District General Hospital. You can find the video of these releases and other videos of our work at our You Tube page www.youtube.com/user/eastsussexwras. Rescuer Jayden also released a little catted sparrow rescued a couple of weeks ago at The Holt in Hailsham, and two pigeons back at Lottbridge Drove which were originally rescued with various trauma possible from either a hawk or cat. It has been good to see so many casualties going back to the wild this week.

We have had quite a few other rescues to deal with including a starling rescued from a chimney behind an electric fire in a house in Hampden Park. The bird was easily caught and was released outside in the garden after a check over.

There have also been various limping foxes in Eastbourne and Bexhill, a gull which needed rescuing from netting on a roof of some flats in Eastbourne which was rescued with the help of the fire brigade. A poorly hedgehog was delivered across from Haywards Heath as well as one from near Northiam which was speared on a garden fork. You may have seen our press release urging people to “Think Hedgehog” when clearing gardens or undergrowth and to check for hibernating hedgehogs.

We were called out to a badger at Fletching, found curled up behind the wheel of a trailer at a stables. The badger was clearly a young adult probably only 2-3 years old. It was difficult to establish the badger’s condition and at first it looked as though there may be a territorial bite wound on the rump and head. These rescues are not always easy as the badger has plenty of escape routes, so several old blankets and curtains were used to surround the edges of the trailer to fool the badger into thinking it could not escape. I was then able to get partially under the trailer and, using a long handled dog grasper,

I was able to secure the badger and get it into one of our badger cages. On closer inspection the badger was in fairly good condition, and there were only old scars of previous fighting and no injuries or infection. The badger was well hydrated and not that underweight for a winter badger. After 12 hours of TLC and some wholesome food at our casualty centre the badger was returned and released that evening back at the stables.

We had an unusual ride in a quad bike with an injured swan last week at South Chailey. We had a report of an injured swan sitting in the middle of some woodland. By chance John Anderson from Blyth Wildlife Rescue in Northumbria was visiting for the day so he accompanied us.

It was extremely cold and John, Kathy and I had to ride across two fields on the quad bike to get to the swan. It was a juvenile swan and we were shocked at the amount of blood dripping from the beak. On checking the throat we couldn’t see where the blood was coming from. After a full check over, we were hoping the blood would be nothing more than a nasty nose bleed.

Once at Henley House Vets in Uckfield the swan was checked over, the bleeding had reduced considerably but the swan was in a very weak state, very pale and shocked. We gave it some fluids before transporting the swan up to the vets at the Swan Sanctuary. The swan is making a good recovery.