Trevor’s Week for 8th April 2015
This young pigeon came in to us from a vets in Eastbourne. He was believed to have been covered in engine oil. After assessment by our Centre Manger Chris and being seen by our vet Mike he was given a course of antibiotics and daily baths were commenced. He has taken to be bathed quite well and particularly enjoys the low heat from the hair dryer afterwards. His feathers are improving daily. He has become a little character and we hope there are no lasting effects from his ordeal. Being a youngster he is also in need of crop feeding too.
We have also had a pigeon in with a nasty neck wound, luckily this is only tissue damage. After some cleaning, medication and suturing the healing has now started and we hope he will make a full recovery. The cause is likely to be a bird of prey. Cats have also been caught causing a few casualties this week including a young rabbit which sadly didn’t survive. Getting antibiotics into a victim of a cat, dog or any predator attack is important due to the bacteria which is carried on their teeth and claws. It only takes a small pin prick puncture wounds, so just because you can’t see an open wound doesn’t mean the casualty doesn’t need an antibiotic.
I felt sorry for a lady who after donating and dropping off some towels at our Casualty Centre came across a road casualty duck on the A22 just outside on her way home. Care Team members Kirsti and Chris quickly assessed and provided first aid, but sadly it became clear there was likely to be internal injuries. Thankfully, WRAS Trustees Brian and Monica were visiting the centre helped rush the duck to the emergency vets.
WRAS rescuers Chris and Laura rushed to reports of a collared dovelet that had been on the ground all day. The staff at the Star Inn at Normans bay, noticed her early on and raised concerns on Facebook. They were eventually given WRAS contact details and WRAS attended. Unfortunately the dove was nowhere to be seen and had disappeared into some thorn bushes on arrival. Rescuers and the staff spent 45 minutes looking around for her and eventually managed to spot her hunkered under a rotten log. She is calcium deficient and has now been taken to her new foster mum Kathy.
We have also had a new fox cub in. It came in from Kingsmere in Eastbourne the day after we send our last cub up to Wildlife Aid as we didn’t want it staying on its own for too long. This poor little cub was very chesty so was admitted into care and is now being treated.
We’ve had a few hedgehogs in this week too. One came in from Newhaven after being trapped inside a lobster pot! He has rather a sore nose and right foot, and a minor touch of ringworm, but otherwise not too bad. A few young blackbirds and a baby robin have also come in. First ones of the year! They have been more mature than we’ve expecting. Most of the youngsters are coming in calcium deficient.
There has been a lot on facebook and other media outlets recently about the number of foxes, and about foxes attacking cats. A recent study showed that fox numbers in the southeast of England are declining, one of the few areas were that is the case. However because people have little knowledge or understanding of the foxes lifestyle they jump to conclusions about the number of foxes present. One lady asked me last week, what can she do about the increasing number of foxes visiting her garden, but when I asked her how many foxes she had visiting she said she was only able to say several, and when I asked how many had been seen at one time together, she said only one. Obviously this isn’t a large number. There are a number of times during the year when foxes are more active and move round covering a larger area than normal, and as a result the population can seem higher. Also once the cubs are old enough to start wondering round you notice an increase in their numbers but so many of them are killed on roads, poisoned, shot and killed by dogs, that the population decreases back down to its original levels within 6 months. The average life span of a fox is only 18 months, despite foxes being able to live for up to 8 years. As with all wildlife because of the high mortality rates they produce a lot more young than necessary in order for enough to survive to ensure the future of the population. Foxes like most wildlife can be noisy, but again this goes on for a short period of time whilst mating or being territorial during the spring. As I have said many times before, culling any animal is only ever a short term, costly and inefficient solution to a problem. If you have problems with wildlife visiting your garden it is always best to call in a humane wildlife deterrence company who can look at the long term problem and help with a solution.
Trevor Weeks MBE
Founder & Operations Director
East Sussex Wildlife Rescue & Ambulance Service (WRAS)
Reg Charity 1108880
Reg Address: 8 Stour Close, Stone Cross, BN24 5QU
Hospital Address: Unit 8 The Shaw Barn, Whitesmith, Lewes, BN8 6JD
24hr Rescue Line: 07815-078234
Private Mobile: 07931-523958
An award winning community charity.
IFAW Animal Action Award Winners 2010
ITV1 British Animal Honours Awards Local Charity of the Year 2013
BBC Radio Sussex & Surrey Community Heroes Award for Animal Welfare 2012