Swan Notes: Swans released back on to river

Berwick swan notes
Berwick swan notes

This week we were able to release the three elderly swans that have been given a boost with good food over the cold weather.

They are all old birds but we hope they will have another summer at least on the river.

We also released all the swans and last year’s cygnets including the three that were hatched at The Rollo Centre. They all went off as a group so we hope they will soon learn the ways of the river.

It was a good day to send them off as although the water was high it was not running too fast and it was calm. The first night they were out it was not frosty.

The next couple of days were not wet or too cold, Dick reported that when he left them they were grazing the bank enjoying the grass.

This leaves us at the moment with just three swans all suffering from lead poisoning. Two are recovering well but one is having another course of injections as her lead levels are still too high.

We had to have another swan put to sleep last week as she was responding to the treatment but slowly weakening.

Our hedgehogs are waking up. We only have three out of the 19 we have that are still sleeping. The ones outside are hardening off well and in another few weeks they can all go off to the big wide world.

Our Short Eared Owl has improved very much. He had a broken wing which had to be pinned.

After the pins were removed he went into an aviary to gain strength. He holds his right wing a little low especially after he has flown but he is getting stronger when he flies. As soon as the Tawny Owl in the big flight is released he will move into there which will give him much more room to increase his strength.

We see very little of the Tawny Owl in the big flight as he hides in his box most of the day. We shall check his flying skills later this week as we think he is about ready for release.

We are arranging a spring clean weekend for April 11-12. As many as possible of our volunteers come along to help clean out pens and cages etc before we start the spring rush of orphans and young animals.

We also do all the little repair jobs so if you think you could help please contact us on 01289302882 (if we are not there please leave your contact details and we will get back to you).

We have loads of painting to do and we need to finish off the isolation room too. Brian has done a brilliant job of painting the aviaries and doing the garden but I’m sure he would appreciate some help. He also needs a motor mower as our last one gave up the ghost in the autumn last year. We need one with a grass box as we use the mowings for feeding the swans. If anyone has a mower they no longer use we would make good use of it.

We also still need people to help with fund-raising projects. Please help if you can, we are a friendly bunch and would welcome help.