Chris, Kathy and I rushed to Grassington Road, not far from Eastbourne Town Hall in Eastbourne, after a male roe deer became trapped in a garden.
It had jumped over a fence but the ground level the other side was lower meaning it couldn’t jump back out again as the wall was too high. Most deer can jump at least six feet over fences.
The roe deer has been roaming this part of Eastbourne for the past few days and this area west of Eastbourne Town Hall is an area they visit from time to time. We have seen then in Saffrons Park, Compton Place Road, Meads Road, Carlisle Road and even running up Grove Road outside the Town Hall before. Roe deer and Muntjac have been seen roaming roads and gardens between The Downs and Ocklynge Cemetery too.
We used a walk-to-wards net to catch the deer. It took us a couple of attempts to catch the deer but it was soon secured. We were worried that the deer was going to injure itself or break the window of the lady’s house. The deer was secured onto a stretcher and then loaded into the back of WRAS’s veterinary ambulance and driven a few minutes away onto a near by golf course which was the closest open space and on the route deer take to get into the housing estate from The Downs. Chris stayed in the back of the ambulance with the deer. Once at the release site the deer was unloaded and unstrapped from the stretcher and released, and straight away ran off across the golf course so it could hopefully find its partner and any young if in the area.
I’ve now taken over from Chris doing my two weeks of night time on-call. My first night on last Friday turned into a busy one. I was called out to an injured collared dove at Broadoak Brede at 11:30pm. I arrived about 12:30am where I was shown the fledgling dove which was rather weak and underweight and in need of help. While there I received a call about an injured hedgehog in Saltwood Road, Seaford. I started heading back to our casualty centre to bed the dove down but as I drove through Battle the phone range again. This time for an emergency call to a dog attacked hedgehog at Northiam. The address was only four miles away from where I just been to rescue the dove. I turned round and drove back again as this hedgehog sounded more urgent than the Seaford hedgehog. At 1.25am I collected the hedgehog from Northiam. The hedgehog had a missing front leg but the wound was old. The blood was clearly from the dog. I drove back to our casualty centre and then on to Seaford where I was able to then collect the hedgehog about 2.40am. This hedgehog was also in need of help and I gave emergency medication before rushing him back to our centre. The three casualties were all bedded down and treated and settled for the night. After I had finished their paperwork I finally drove home and got into bed at 4.30am. I am so glad we run an emergency service at night. So many organisations don’t. There is no doubt that these three casualties would have suffered in pain and discomfort for hours otherwise. We can only respond to genuine emergency calls after 10pm at night and before 9am in the morning, so please do not call unless it is a real emergency. So for example if you have a gull chick which has jumped off a roof and running around the floor this is not an emergency, so please put the animal or bird somewhere safe and call us after 9am.
Chris and I rushed to Princes Park after reports of an injured swan with blood on its wings last week. The swan was moulting and appears to have been injured possibly by a dog. When moulting, swans can be quite lethargic, so if you are walking around Princes Park please keep your dog under control.
We have lost count of the number of gull chicks we have been out to this week. Other calls have included a nest of four swallows in a stable at Burwash Common, an owl which fell out of a tree at Sheffield Park Gardens, a couple of baby hedgehogs out during the day in Polegate as well as yet another shot gull in Pevensey Road, Eastbourne and a white dove shot in Hailsham. It has been so busy at the moment we aren’t getting much chance to post about the amazing work our orphan team is doing. It has already released or currently has in release pens so far this year 13 sparrows, 10 starlings, 13 bluetits, nine dunnocks, 14 robins, 32 blackbirds, five great tits, one chaffinch, goldfinch and green finch, eight crows, five jackdaws and four magpies. five rabbits, six ducklings, 55 collared dovelets, 30 young feral pigeons and around 15 baby woodpigeons so far.
Not counting our fox cubs who will be in their outdoor pen for a while yet. At the centre we are full to bursting with all these species still and more.