TREVOR WEEKS MBE - The heat is on for wildlife and volunteers at the centre

Little Frank, a Collared dovelet found starving on the ground at a farm is recovering well.
Little Frank, a Collared dovelet found starving on the ground at a farm is recovering well.

Many thanks to all our volunteers on the feed and clean shifts, baby bird team and rescuers for working so hard in this very hot weather.

The heat, combined with shifts being short with holiday and illness has caused the work to be harder than normal at our busiest time of year. It’s been very tough going on everyone, but you are all doing a great job we can’t thank you enough.

We were called out by Peacehaven Community College for the second time in two years, as a mother duck keeps nesting in a courtyard in the centre of the school which they can’t get out of. Last year we were able to leave them alone and they flew without any intervention but this year they nested late, as most wildlife has, and they were not going to be able to fly out before the school closed for the summer break, so rather than see them starve we decided to step in and move them to a new home.

The staff at the school normally feed and water them and have pools for them to paddle but with the school closing they would clearly not survive. So they were rounded up along with mum and taken to the Valley Road Ponds at Newhaven where they have now settled in nicely.

The seven ducklings found wandering on South Road, Hailsham, last week are doing well. They are much bigger and we are moving them to an outside pen this week.

We have had at least five road casualty gulls in the past week which have been run over on purpose by motorists aiming for fledgling gulls. If you see anyone aim for and purposefully running over a gull or in fact any animal, please phone the police as they are causing unnecessary suffering by doing so. Remember to take the registration number.

If you have netting on your building please remember that you have a legal responsibility to maintain it and deal with anything which becomes trapped in it. Any trapped animal or bird has the same rights as a captive animal under the Animal Welfare Act, so it must have freedom to move and have access to food and water. If the owner of a building does not deal with the trapped bird within a reasonable period of time after being informed, they can be prosecuted. If you notice a bird trapped in netting speak to the people in the building but if they don’t deal with the trapped bird in reasonable time you can report them to the police and the RSPCA.

Little Frank a Collared dovelet, came into care this week. Found down on the ground at a farm, his crop was totally empty and he was telling us in no uncertain terms that he was starving. A real little character this one. He is doing well and Kathy has had him at home to building him up slowly. WRAS Carer Monica has also had her hands full with yet more young hedgehogs. Several have been having problems with the heat. Monica has now helped us deal with over 20 young hedgehogs this summer.

Aquilegia, a male who was found on 1st June stretched out in a flowerbed in the sun at Ridgewood, Uckfield, was a worry when he was rescued by Kathy and I. He was so weak, dehydrated and underweight we really were not sure if he would survive. Amazingly he has gone from strength to strength, it never fails to amaze me how fluids make such a difference to these cases. We think he probably woke up from hibernation fairly late in the season and was struggling for some time to gain the weight due to a parasite burden. He was only 515g and clearly should have been much bigger. But he was released back home this week 
weighing over a kilo.

Don’t forget to come and visit us at the Lammas festival on the Western lawns, Eastbourne, this weekend, July 27 and 28.