TREVOR WEEKS: Three cases of gulls suffering from fishing tackle wounds

Gulls with fishing line and hooks SUS-170609-095322001
Gulls with fishing line and hooks SUS-170609-095322001

Fishing tackle has been a big issue this week. On Sunday we have had three gulls admitted in one day with fishing gear stuck in their feet and beaks.

The first one had a hook and weight attached to its foot. The second one had a hook in its beak and one in its foot. The third one took a while to cut free with multiple hooks embedded in its body.

Just after 1am on Sunday morning WRAS took a call regarding a poorly fox in Nutley. Duty Rescuer Coordinator Chris drove up from Eastbourne and met the caller who had kindly waited, as other organisations more local don’t operate 24 hours a day.

Thankfully, because they very kindly waited on site, they were able to show Chris exactly where the fox had been and which direction it moved off in. Crawling through some hedgerows Chris was able to find the route the fox had taken and catch the fox so it could be rushed to our hospital and receive emergency first aid.

On assessment Chris found that the poor fox had fractured both legs close to the joint. After such an effort it was heart breaking to realise that the fox was likely to need putting to sleep.

The fox was rushed to Vets Now emergency service at St Annes Road Eastbourne. They further assessed the fox and agreed that the injuries were fatal and gently put her to sleep.

It was 4am when Chris arrived home, and with only two hours before he was getting up to prepare for the Seaford 10k Run which WRAS rescuers Chris, Brian, Andrew and I were running to raise money for WRAS. Its not too late to sponsor them by visiting their just giving page at

Over the weekend we have admitted a baby goldfinch with two broken legs from Sayers Common. The little one has had splints made from cotton buds by Chris and Katie from our care team and has been settled in our orphan room. We are monitoring him closely to ensure the splint are working.

We had a juvenile wood pigeon with canker from Upper Avenue in Eastbourne.

Our buzzard from Pevensey Levels has been released.

I rescued a pigeon from one of our friends in Burgess Hill that was having difficulty flying.

We had a sparrow and a pigeon from Eastbourne. The sparrow was catted and the pigeon has a nasty eye infection.

Our friends from the Swan Sanctuary collected a poorly duck from us and took home with them.

If anyone is interested in becoming a volunteer rescuer for East Sussex WRAS on a Wednesday or Thursday between 10am and 6pm please get in contact with me on or phone 01825-873003.

You need to be fit, and hold a full driving licence. Also presentable, polite, level-headed, good at thinking on your feet and able to react sensibly. All training is on the job starting with simple collections and deliveries.

Chris and I rushed to Burwash to deal with a young deer which had been hit by a car.

For well over half an hour of trying to get help via Sussex Police and the Deer Wardens Scheme, the motorist who stopped phoned WRAS back and we agreed to attend.

It took us over half an hour to drive there and still no help had arrived, so we carefully loaded the deer onto a stretcher and into our ambulance, but sadly she passed away whilst being transported. Such a shame and a waste of life.

There is currently a national census of hedgehog houses taking place in the UK. It closes on October 31. If you have a hedgehog house in your garden, either bought or home-made, please complete the survey online.

Chris and I had to catch a Canada goose at the Uckfield Water Treatment Works last week. The Canada goose has a fracture as well as ‘angel wing’, so the bird has been transported up to the Swan Sanctuary for assessment.

We have had two swans from Princes Park limping. Both have been treated and were released on Monday. The two swans which crashed on the A22 Highfield Link an Cross Levels Way, Eastbourne, last week have also both been released after a few days of treatment and care.

Kathy is working extremely hard at the moment with 14 hedgehogs in her garden and Hedgehog Unit as well as 24 baby or young pigeons at home too.

This year has been an exceptional year for baby pigeons and doves.

This has meant that Kathy is tied to two to three hourly feeds from early morning till the evening.