The day the wild life came to visit Part 1

A couple of month's ago, we had two unexpected guests in our conservatory over a weekend.

We are a very animal loving family, and my son loves all creatures including the creepy-crawly ones!

When he was born we already had two staffies, so for the first five years of his life, he was used to having animals around.  By 2016 we had lost both my dogs and it left a big hole in my heart and that year my son also lost his Grandma.

By the following spring, he'd been savagely bitten by a dog and that put an end to us having another dog in the house until he is much older, so we turned to the wildlife!

Sounds a bit crazy, going from domestic animals to Mother Nature's wild ones, but it wasn't anything like nipping out into the forest and feeding a Badger by hand.  It was just the animals that pop in our garden looking for food, namely the baby seagulls and hedgehogs!

The day the seagull hopped by

Our neighbour has a pair of seagulls that nest in the roof each year, and each year they come down for some mealworm.  As the babies get older they come down instead and then by adolescence they're off to find their new homes.

I know people tell us not to feed them, etc, but we do it so my child has some interaction with animals and nature, and it doesn't appear to do the seagulls any harm or make them domestic or depend on us.

One of the babies had been somewhere, obviously not too far away and had got his feet entangled on some rope.  They were bound together and he was having trouble fly.  I don't know what it was but whilst he was on my wall eating I managed to get behind him and snip the rope, enabling him to at least move his legs and fly, but the rope was still wrapped around each leg.

I had hoped that he would pick it off himself, but he didn't. The next two days, I would stand in front of him and he'd watch me whilst he ate and my partner went behind him and would try and snip more of the wool/hair/whatever it was off his legs that were starting to go red!

It was clear the rope was hurting him and he'd started to limp.  I phoned my local animal rescue WADARS for advice, and because they are birds, and we don't know exactly when he would visit they couldn't help us.  They suggested we try and catch him and take him to the vets to get the rope cut off.

Catch him....?

We Did!

That was a crazy day!

We didn't take him to the vets, he's a lively bird and I wasn't convinced we'd keep him in a box long enough to get him there, and the last thing I want is him loose flapping about in the car!

So I got a really sharp pair of scissors and slowly cut the string away from both feet.  One was so tight around his ankle by now it took longer to get off.  He struggled at first and nipped at my partner, but he never attacked me whilst I was cutting.  I wonder sometimes if he knew we were trying to help?

After around 20 minutes of not breathing, slowing cutting and shaking (all of us I think), he was free to leave.  He did, but he came back half an hour later for more food!

He stayed for a couple more days and we watched as he stopped limping and put more pressure on his bad leg, but then he left.  We haven't seen him since, so I'd like to think he'd found his new home which they do every year, that, or he's worked out we're crazy people with scissors.

Here's to next year's baby gulls.

So, about that hedgehog.........

1 comment:

  1. That's amazing that you were able to help like that


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