All good news, as young and injured thrive

MY reports lately seem to be all doom and gloom about rescued birds and mammals which have had to be put to sleep by the vet as their injuries were too severe

This week I have all good news, so you can safely read the rest of this article without being upset.

The resident swans at Eyemouth with their five little cygnets are all doing well and I think there is a round- the-clock surveillance team run by the townsfolk to protect Jock, Jenny and their family.

They were very lucky that the eggs hatched as some got rather wet when the river level rose; not all the eggs hatched but five youngsters is a good score.

Our young tawny owl is now very well feathered and looking quite grown up. He is in a small aviary but is able to fly carefully from branch to branch. The next move is to give him much more room so he can really stretch his wings. I think we have another tawny coming in a few days, hopefully about the same age. This will give them both company and they do learn from one another.

Our 17 mallard ducklings and one eider duckling are all doing well and rapidly growing out of their pens. We shall have to have more pens made up as they really need to be in smaller groups (perhaps six to a run) as they grow. These ducklings are very time-consuming to care for as there is so much cleaning.

Bethany came to help us during her holiday and was very good at cleaning the little sheds out. I think Kay as well as myself have a job to get down on our knees and shove our head and shoulders into the huts to scrub them out, and then the hard bit: getting out and up on our feet! Bethany, young and fit, did a brilliant job.

As a reward for all her hard work, Bethany helped to release two swans that have been with us for some weeks. One had been shot in the head, the other had a leg injury. Both were fit and ready to go so she helped corner the birds and bag them up and then took them to the slipway to send them on their way. Dick took this photo of Bethany with the bagged-up swans.

Another great release this week was the peregrine. After flying headlong into a factory wall the bird had been temporarily blinded but after some weeks in our care its sight gradually returned. David and Dick took the bird out and were thrilled to see the bird fly off strongly and soar into the air. It is amazing what a couple of months’ quiet and rest can achieve.

I would like to thank Allan and Barbara for joining our ‘hands on’ team. They are a most welcome addition.

Some fundraising news now. Lanark Lodge, who come to help two days a week, are fundraising for us at some of their events during Disability Learning Week, June 20-24. They have several exhibitions and displays showing the work they do. Full details are on our website.

Mel is entering The Great North Swim to raise funds for the Trust so if you would like to show your support you will find details and a link on our website. There is a ceilidh at Kirknewton Village Hall on June 18 at 7.30pm till midnight. There will be a raffle and supper, and Heads on the Block are performing. Proceeds of the evening will be shared by Swan Trust and BARK.

We shall also have a stall at the BARK car boot sale on Sunday, June 19 so come and visit us there.

A forward date for your diary is Sunday, July 31 when we are holding an open day at HQ followed by the Trust’s AGM.

PAT GOFF

Should you find an animal in need of our services, or if you need advice please phone HQ on (01289) 302882. We are happy to help. You can also e-mail via our website www.swan-trust.org. We are also on Facebook at www.facebook.com/swantrust.

If you would like to donate to the Trust (cheques payable to B.S.W.T.) or to become a member please contact the treasurer, Derek Roughton, Yew Tree Cottage, Branton, Alnwick, NE66 4LW. Telephone (01665) 578365.

The Berwick Swan and Wildlife Trust is a registered charity in England No. 1064805.