TREVOR WEEKS: Storm Imogen seagull finally rescued - and a week for badgers

Sleeping Road Casualty Badger from Hastings SUS-160215-102602001
Sleeping Road Casualty Badger from Hastings SUS-160215-102602001

Well done to our rescue co-ordinator Chris, who has had busy week of out of hours calls. We had three badgers during the night last week. The first was a road casualty from Cuckfield and was delivered to us by the Badger Trust.

He was admitted late at night and I joined Chris at WRAS’s Casualty Centre to help assess, triage and provide emergency care.

There was a lot of clotted blood from his nose and he sounded chesty.

We were able to put a bandage muzzle on the badger and check him over from head to toe.

Luckily we couldn’t find any sign of any serious injuries.

Then a stethoscope to the chest sounded clear too.

Following veterinary advice, fluids were given with emergency medication, and he was booked in to see the vet first thing.

The following morning x-rays were taken and vets confirmed out assessment of the badger’s condition and treatment.

The following day we received a call to a road casualty badger in Hastings.

Rescuers Daryl and Kai joined Chris to gain experience.

When they arrived they found members of East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service guarding the badger and keeping him safe till we arrived.

Amazingly the badger was in almost identical condition to the one the previous day.

I met them at WRAS’s Casualty Centre to again help assess the badger’s condition.

The following morning he also had an x-ray confirming the lack of any serious injuries, just minor damage to the nose again.

Two days later we then had a call about a third badger in a garden in Willingdon.

Chris with his partner Laura rushed to the scene and managed to catch the badger which was not using her legs properly.

At WRAS’s Casualty Centre I went through assessing the badger, but this time her condition was different.

There was movement in all the legs but signs that the badger had been dragging its legs.

An ultrasound of the abdomen showed an enlarged bladder, which needed expressing.

Emergency medication was given and we arranged for her to be seen by one of our vets.

Sadly x-rays revealed the badger to have a damaged spine, which was calcifying but not in a good way, which was causing the legs and bladder not to function properly.

Sadly they recommended the badger be put to sleep.

Thank you to Henley House Vets in Uckfield for helping so much this week with dealing with these badgers and more.

Due to the number of large animals we have in at the moment, Folly Wildlife Rescue has very kindly taken on the badger from the Badger Trust now, and the Fox Project has also taken on a fox from Eastbourne Hospital.

WRAS received a call last Monday during Storm Imogen about a gull tangled on a rooftop in Eastbourne.

The fire brigade attended but due to the severe weather it was just too dangerous to deal with.

We asked the caller to keep us informed and to let us know if the gull was still there once the wind died down.

We received another call on the Wednesday to say they had spotted it on the roof so rescuer Dave went down to assess the situation.

He again called in the fire service who used their aerial platform to free the bird.

Thank you to all involved.

The gull is luckily not seriously injured but needs to rest and recuperate with our friends at Bird Aid.

We had fun trying to catch a young swan on flood water at Sharpsbridge near Uckfield.

The swan had a dropped wing and we had a couple of local people phone out of concern as it had been present for quite a while.

We tried catching the swan but the strong winds meant it was able to easily take off just by opening its wings.

The following day we had another try when less windy, but with a run up he was still able to fly well so we suspect the injuries are not serious and should hopefully recover.

We will monitor the situation in case it gets worse.

Once the stormy weather was over we also got a chance to release some of our pigeons,.

A couple of wood pigeons went back home, including the one which had come in with severe head injuries and massively swollen eyes and was not expected to make it.

We were also able to release three pigeons back to Uckfield High Street together.

Pizzeria, a grey youngster, had been seen in the road outside Pizza Express by one of our passing volunteers, and went under a car, the other two released with him were siblings Severus and Snape, who came in over a period of two days found struggling in the town.

They are now back in the flock and have been seen around since.

We have also had an influx of young pigeons in, one of our youngsters Blizzard from Haywards Heath Railway Station who came in last week now has a friend of the same age called Flurry, who was found being kicked in Brighton.

We also had two slightly older youngsters, Drip and Drop, who are at the Casualty Centre being weaned, and on the same day Fog and Frost, who were a couple of weeks younger and spent a few days with Kathy, and very young babies Splish and Splash, who are too young to be cared for at the centre yet, but all doing well.

We have also managed to release five of our young pigeons from one of our release aviaries and our two baby rabbits have also now been soft released.

We have also had a very underweight partridge come into care after being picked up by a dog in Whiteway Lane Lewes, plus a road casualty moorhen rescued in Broomhill Lane Whitesmith.

Rescuer Keith was also called out to his daughter’s home after a sparrow became stuck in an extractor fan hose.

It’s unclear how he managed to get inside.

Keith spent a couple of hours trying to help the sparrow escape.

The grill was removed from the end of the hose on the outside of the house and the bird encouraged out.

Keith used a compact mirror secured to a small pole to see inside the hose to check the bird had escaped.