Wildlife rescuers called to break up a fight between two swans

One of the swans stuck at the marina SUS-150903-104925001
One of the swans stuck at the marina SUS-150903-104925001

Wildlife rescuers were called out at the weekend to break up a fight between two swans.

East Sussex Wildlife Rescue & Ambulance Service (WRAS) were phoned by security staff at Brighton Marina after two swans started fighting and one became stuck.

Rescuers had to scare off one of the two swans which was attacking the other, which had become wedged between a pontoon and wall at the side of the marina on Saturday (March 7).

Rescuer Tony Neads, from Polegate, struggled to free the swan which was tightly caught.

“In addition to get the swan out of a narrow gap, they were entangled in a hose pipe too,” he said.

“I got very wet in the process but after encouraging the first swan away, I was eventually able to reach the stuck swan and lift him out of the narrow gap to safety.

“On land I could then see the swan had a nasty injury down to the bone on the side of its foot. The attacking swan was also injured but not as severely as the first which had to be my priority.”

The swan had to be rushed to WRAS’s Casualty Care Centre at Whitesmith where Centre Manager Chris Riddington assessed the wounds and provided first aid.

“The wound was right along the side of the toe down to the bone and damaged the nail bed too,” he said.

“We struggled at first to stop the bleeding. We think this swan became stuck and struggling to get away from the attacking swan which we believe was trying to chase off the intruder in his territory.

The swan was taken up to the Swan Sanctuary in Shepperton for specialist veterinary care due to the severity.

Rescuer Chris attended on site on the Sunday to check the other injured swan which he managed to catch from one of the pontoons using food.

“There was a similar wound on this swan but luckily no as bad as the first swan,” he said. “So he is was taken to WRAS where he has been bedded down for assessment on Monday.”

WRAS founder Trevor Weeks added, “WRAS has dealt with several swan overs the past couple of months where swans have been chased off or injured in territorial fighting between swans, which are starting to think about this springs breeding season and they don’t want last year’s youngsters or any other pairs of swans hanging around.”