Trevor’s Week: Moorhen gave us the runaround

Trevor Weeks
Trevor Weeks

On October 12 we will be running another of our Hedgehog Awareness Days. Throughout the day there will be presentation at 10am, noon, 2pm, 4pm and 6pm looking at hedgehogs the their biology, habits and diets as well as looking at hazards and illnesses which they and how we can help, and when they should be picked up and taken into care.

Visitors will also get the opportunity to meet Victoria the hedgehog which was injured as a result of being kicked in Eastbourne. As there is limited parking we are asking people to book places in advance. The sessions are free but we are asking for a minimum donation of £5 per person. To book a place please call 01825 873003.

For the past week we have been trying to catch an injured moorhen at the Pells Pond, Lewes. The poor bird’s leg has pointing backwards and has not been able to swim properly. Several rescuers tried throughout the week without success, so we ended up getting a group of us together to attempt the rescue.

A net was stretched across from the bank to the island to help corner the moorhen, rescuers monitored the birds position from the banks, whilst I climbed into a drysuit and then into the pond. The moorhen gave us a bit of a run around going onto the island and trying to hide, but was eventually encouraged onto the water where it attempted to dive and hide under water, unfortunately the moorhen’s injured leg was still above the water allowing us to find the bird quickly and rescue him.

The moorhen has been transported up to the Swan Sanctuary for their specialist vets to assess and try to fix. An update on some of the hedgehogs in our care. Victoria is doing great, responding to her worming treatment and is now nearly 400g. She is walking well on her broken leg. The police have even been to visit her too.

Crayon the young hog found down a drain is also doing well, they will both be with us till Spring we think as they will be too small to release and safely hibernate. Two little male hedgehogs hand-reared by Monica are now over 400g but again it is unlikely they will be released this year.

Belgium, one of our amputee hogs, is going to his new home this week as is Dandelion the head tilt hog, who is going into a lovely area. Three other hand-reared youngsters are also off to their release site this week where they will be well taken care of for the Winter.

Mango our frequent flyer, who seems to think that if he drops below 1.2kg he needs help and TLC, is also waiting to go home. Two other young hogs Rubber and Kylie are also putting on weight nicely but will again be here all winter.

Two new youngsters over the weekend are Canteen, from a road where the hedgehogs have had a lot of problems the last few years, and Library a little female from outside rescuer Tony’s house in Polegate. Both just seem to need to gain weight and faecal samples have been clear so far.