Trevor’s Week for 3rd June 2015
Some of you will be aware of “Womble” the fox cub who was rescued last week with his head stuck in a plastic jar. Bless him, he must have been so confused and disorientated trying to run round with limited vision. He was seen running around on waste ground by local residents in Woodgate Road Eastbourne. We sent two ambulances to the scene and five rescuers, including Kathy and I, and after two hours we managed to eventually find and catch him. The poor thing tried running away from Chris and Ollie who approached with torches causing him to run straight towards me bumping into things on his way. In the dark I was then able to net him and then Chris quickly had him in his hands. We started in daylight and finished in the dark. Womble was so lucky that the pressure wound on his neck was minor. After just three days in care we were able to send him back to Eastbourne for release. The video of the jar being removed and Womble’s release are on our You Tube Channel www.youtube.com/user/eastsussexwras.
We’ve had yet another two road casualty young foxes. One in Uckfield which sadly died but also one in Eastbourne. The caller raised concerns after seeing the cub on her lawn. Rescuers rushed to the scene and assessed the situation. On examination it was clear the fox was in some distress and needed urgent help. They secured the fox with a net then gently placed him into a carrier. He was clearly suffering from a nasty old wound to the jaw, which smelt infected. Due to the foxes condition, rescuers had no option but to rush him straight into the vets for emergency treatment. Sadly his injuries were just too severe.
We’d like to say a big thank you to Skinners Sheds who have donated a great 8ft by 8ft shed to WRAS to help with our casualty care in Uckfield. We were let down after ordering a shed via a large DIY chain and Skinners Shed stepped in and saved the day so we can continue to save the casualties which come into our care. The shed has now been erected in Uckfield where it is used for rehabilitating hedgehogs and other wildlife back to the wild. So thank you Skinners Sheds for all their support and help.
Five of our fox cubs have been moved to an outside pen as part of their rehabilitation process. We put various shelters in their pens for them, but they have decided to dig underneath them rather than use them! We will return them to the wild once we reach the natural dispersal period for foxes which is around September time. Our first group of ducklings have also moved to one of our outside pens too. They have really enjoyed being outside swimming and foraging for food.
We’ve had a few gull chicks rescued this past week. Including two from B&Q in Eastbourne. This time of year we receive a lot of calls regarding gull chicks falling out of their nests and off of roofs. In some cases it is possible for us to return the gull chick back to its roof and avoid bringing it in to care, so always contact your local wildlife rescue for advice before intervening.
We’ve managed to get two of our pigeons out for release this week. The wood pigeon who hit a window and was grabbed by a dog in Uckfield, as well as another pigeon from Eastbourne. A duck rescued at Little Horsted was also released back to its home this week. We’ve released some more hedgehogs at Polegate and Eastbourne and 3 handreared woodpigeons from one of our soft release aviaries, as well as groups of handreared dunnocks, robins, sparrows and blackbirds.
With mixed weather this week we have finally seen a slight dip in call numbers, but we are still very busy at times. We go through phases of quietness and then everyone ringing at the same time making it difficult to get to everyone as quickly as we would like. There have been a number of occasions this week when we haven’t been able to get to people quickly enough so had to pass calls over to other organisations. Our friends at Seahaven Bird Rescue and Bexhill are both full at the moment, and we are trying our best to support them where we can too. All rescue centres up and down the country will be getting very packed at the moment, and with the phone ringing round the clock this is the time when many people and organisations close under the pressure. Everyone has their limits and the welfare of the casualties already in care have to be the priority for any organisation, so please do not think an organisation doesn’t care if it can’t respond it’s because they are so busy.
The only reason WRAS can now take in up to 220 casualties at a time, is because of the support we get from our donors and volunteers. We are short on volunteers for our Tuesday early evening shift, our Saturday morning shift and our Sunday early evening shift. The morning shift starts at 9am and the evening shift starts between 5 and 5.30pm. The shifts vary in length from week to week and can be as long as 3-4 hours but often shorter depending on the species and number of casualties in care. If anyone is interested in helping with these feed and clean shifts please get in contact with our Volunteer Co-ordinator Kathy via e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Kathy is a volunteer too, so if you don’t get a reply straight away please be patient as she is also very busy helping with the casualties too. Lindsay is still recruiting volunteer for our orphan rearing team too. For more information about volunteering with WRAS please check out the volunteering page on our website www.wildlifeambulance.org.