Trevor’s Week - March 28, 2012: Operation likely for injured badger

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ON SATURDAY night I met rescuer Tony at the WRAS Casualty Care Centre just before midnight, after he and Claire rescued a road casualty badger on the A259 at Little Common near Bexhill.

The badger had been hit twice but managed to get up and run into a garden, close to the main roundabout. I checked it over to also find a healing territorial badger bite wound on the rump.

Last week we were also called to check on a badger curled behind the village shop in East Hoathly. This one had a nasty territorial bite wound too.

Our vet Simon Harris sedated both and they have been treated, but the Little Common badger is likely to need an operation this week.

Sadly one of the two badger cubs rescued from a construction site in Eastbourne a couple of weeks ago did not survive. The little girl struggled after being rescued but the little boy is doing much better and feeding well.

KAREN Breese worked very hard over the weekend, completing the Sussex Ultra Marathon – 50 miles – as well as the Hastings Half Marathon too.

Karen thanks everyone who donated to raise funds for WRAS and also to thank some very special people who were there for her throughout, especially Richard who started with Karen getting up at 2.30am; Russ and Callum from Sussex 4x4 Response, who looked after Karen so well; Adi, Lee, Em and Tony for taking time to see Karen at the end; and everyone for their amazing good luck wishes.

WRAS thanks Karen for all her hard work and for dedicating so much time and energy to raising money to support WRAS. You can still donate to support Karen at her just giving page www.justgiving.com/kazwras.

Martin Allen and Katie Chapman also ran the Hastings Half Marathon for WRAS and are waiting to confirm exactly how much has been raised – but it is at least £460 between them.

WE HAVE had yet more calcium deficient collared doves in this week – two collected from St Anne’s Vets as well as two from Henley House Vets in Uckfield. Sadly one didn’t make it but the others are getting there and recovering from their poor diets out in the wild.

A TAWNY Owl was rescued after having a near miss with a car and flying into a chain link fence near Rocks Park in Uckfield. Apart from some minor cuts to the top beak, the owl was uninjured but a little concussed. He has been a really good patient. After just four days in care he was released late on Saturday night, where he flew of really strongly.

WE HAD a road casualty female duck come in to care from Piltdown Pond last week. Her belly wounds were not nice to look at and vet Chris Hall had to use seven staples to repair the damage. She is now at WRAS’s Casualty Care Centre at Whitesmith. She is being monitored closely as she is still causing us concern.

WE HAVE had some swans to deal with this week too. We were called out to a swan at Langney Pond with a fishing hook caught in the surface layers of skin on the neck. When we arrived local anglers had already caught the swan and were waiting for us. Thankfully the hook was not down the throat but embedded in the surface layers of tissue on the outside of the neck.

Pain relief and antibiotics were given and the hook removed. The swan is now back on the pond with its partner.

We also had an emergency call to a swan with injuries to both legs at Princes Park in Eastbourne. When we arrived the swan was sat on top of the metal grill across the inlet stream. Once caught using the swan hook, I was able to assess the wounds better.

We provided first aid and bandaged up her wounds and emergency treatment was authorised onsite. Due to the deep wounds and compound fracture to one toe, the swan was transported up to the Swan Sanctuary at Shepperton for specialist veterinary staff to take on and repair.

ON A much smaller scale we had a little adult Blue Tit come into from Lewes after hitting a window. A number of school children and adults, while leaving the local school, saw the little bird hit the window. At first it sat on the window ledge but fell to the floor before we arrived. However, back at WRAS’s Casualty Centre the little chap was given medication and bedded down for the night. The following morning he had fully recovered and was flying well, so he was taken back to Lewes and released again.

THERE have been a number of new video clips uploaded (You Tube Channel www.youtube.com/user/eastsussexwras) - including a video of a jackdaw rescue from a chimney in old Town, Eastbourne. The bird had fallen down a chimney and rescuers had to unscrew a cover in order to get to it. After dusting him down and checking he wasn’t injured in any way the jackdaw was taken outside and released where he flew off across the gardens and away.

WE HAVE also been out to a gull in Upper Avenue in Eastbourne which flew off as we approached, but we ended up helping to rescue a 91-year-old gentleman who had lost his car with his wife in! He had left his 84-year old wife in the car while he went to the Citizen’s Advice Bureau. He had been walking around for 45 minutes unable to find his car and wife. We ended up calling Sussex Police to help.

New WRAS rescuer Jayden managed to locate his car (and wife asleep in the passenger seat) at the other end of St Leonards Road, much to the gentleman’s relief.

THIS is the last week for a chance to win a fantastic fox portrait. Sandra Palme, professional wildlife artist, has drawn the portrait to help raise funds for East Sussex WRAS. The winnerwill be selected at random from who donates on a special justgiving page www.justgiving.com/FoxPortrait. Closing date is March 31.

THERE have been numerous other wildlife casualties this week, including call outs to a feral pigeon caught by a sparrowhawk. Sadly the owner of the garden ran out to ‘save’ the pigeon and frightened the sparrowhawk off. We had to take the poor pigeon to the vets as it was badly damaged beyond repair.

THERE was also a young pigeon unable to fly rescued from a lady in Bexhill who had been feeding it bread and water since Friday, and a road casualty pheasant hit between Isfield and Uckfield which was badly damaged with multiple fractures and injuries sadly.

PLEASE be aware there are baby foxes around at the moment, most very small and only a matter of weeks old. As they grow it is not uncommon for vixens to move her cubs from one den to another. As she does so, she will normally leave cubs at half way locations as she can only pick up and move one at a time, and this may take a couple of nights to achieve.

So if you find a cub hidden behind a bush at the bottom of your garden do not touch it. If it is out in the open, exposed and or wandering around your garden then call for advice first before touching it. Last week we were called to a fox cub in a garden which a dog found. We advised the finder to replace the fox back in the garden and before we could arrive the vixen had already been back to collect it.

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East Sussex WRAS is a voluntary organisation which relies on donations, receiving no funding from government or the RSPCA. Anyone wishing to make a donation should contact the treasurer at PO Box 2148, Seaford, BN25 9DE.

• 24-hour rescue line 07815 078234

www.wildlifeambulance.org