The last few months have been incredibly busy so we have not been able to update you much on what has been happening on the wildlife unit. Before the year is over we thought it would be good to give you a very quick overview of what has been going on in 2021. It is impossible to update you on all that has happened since the start of the year, but let’s give it a try.
So far this year…
Each year follows a similar pattern, with seasons effecting which species of wildlife we see regularly being admitted. Early spring time this year is when we saw a rise in ducklings arriving in our care, unfortunately, many where with us due to being separated from their mother. Once admitted to us ducklings are health checked and closely monitored until they are old enough to be released, which is always a lovely sight. Not only have we been able to help the ducklings brought in to us, but the wildlife team also helped reunite a mother and duckling after a report of them becoming separated when crossing a busy road. Fast forwarding to October this year, we had a late appearance of ducklings ,seen below, they are growing more every day and are now preparing to be released in the near future.
The number of wild bird admittances also started to rise in spring, with us seeing all species of birds from finches to sparrow hawks. This year we have been able to release 156 birds, and this number will continue to rise in the next few weeks. Hand feeding around the clock, along with individual specialised care is what saves these birds. The team are experienced and know how to treat a wide range of illnesses/injuries, but they are always willing to try something new to ensure all birds are given the best possible chance of survival. A lovely story from this year saw the team give hydrotherapy a go, for a gull that was struggling to support its own weight. After weeks of sitting in litter trays filled with water, the gull began building its strength up making his way to the release aviary. This just shows that it is always worth trying different treatments, as this individual is now back to full health.
Throughout the year healthy hedgehogs are being released, 235 up to now have gone back out in to the wild this year! Some however, are unable to be released back in to the wild like Roger here, who needed a secure garden where he would be safe, but still have a natural environment to roam around in. We receive regular updates about Roger, who is coping really well in his wild garden.
Not all of our hedgehogs are easily treated, but the team never give up. Last year, a hedgehog was admitted to us having difficulty breathing. He was given medication by our vet, and was monitored closely. His condition was up and down for months, so this year the decision was made to x-ray him. From this we found that a foreign body in his nasal cavity was the cause of his problems. Now he is finally showing signs of improvement, and will be released very soon.
These are only a few stand out moments from our year, but it would be impossible to tell you about all of the wild animals we have seen come through our doors this year. We could not have gotten through the year without all of your help and support! Many appeals have been shared on our social media pages for newspapers, shredded paper, cat biscuit etc and we are always overwhelmed with the amazing response that we get. This time of year the winter hedgehogs are coming in, as our team prepare to overwinter them here at the rescue ready for release next year. Keep an eye out in the New Year when we will begin our monthly updates of all things wildlife!
What we need this week
With our hedgehog numbers rising we are always in need of newspapers and shredded paper. If you are able to donate these, you can drop them off at the Liverpool rescue centre between 9:30am – 4:00pm.
Please telephone the rescue before bringing anything in. They will let you know what is needed. A big thank you to everyone still helping out by donating necessary items.
If you are able to donate money, food or goods in these troubling times, please check our website, social media or Amazon Wishlist.
A huge, huge thank you to anyone who can help, we really do appreciate it.
Avian Influenza Update
• Avian Influenza Statement: We would like to make everybody aware that we have had to make the difficult decision to temporarily stop admitting wild birds at the rescue, due to the outbreak of Avian Influenza in the UK. This decision has not been easy, but we have a large number of domestic birds here also, and we need to put measures in place to protect the 100+ birds currently in our care. If we were to have a case of Avian Influenza onsite, all of the birds here would have to be culled – which is not something we want to risk happening.
• Avian Influenza is a notifiable disease, if you suspect a case of Avian Influenza it must be reported immediately by calling the DEFRA Rural Services Helpline on 03000 200 301. If you are in Wales phone 0300 303 8268 and if you are in Scotland, you must contact your local Field Services Officer.
Always remember to seek advice from the wildlife staff before bringing an animal to the rescue. If an animal is seriously injured, please contact a vet as we don’t always have a vet on site. Most vets treat wildlife for free.