Saturday, 18 May 2013

Bittersweet Week

After nurturing the woodpigeons with such care  for the past few weeks, I had hoped their release to the wild would be OK. Sadly, Alan the most able of the two has been killed by a Sparrowhawk the day after release. 

I found his remains in Viewfield near the tennis courts, which was the direction I saw him fly to when released. Woody returned the next day and I was relieved to see it was alive, he has since been away again but returned again today. He is not yet savvy to the wild, and I will keep him in the Aviary for a while longer until he is more mature.  

The paraplegic pigeon has also returned with the flock of feral pigeons and has survived being released. This bird you would not have given Tuppence for his chances, yet he has survived and can fly as well as any other pigeon, it's walking that he has a problem with.

 Meanwhile Woody is company for the miracle duckling with the broken leg. Astonishingly the leg has healed into a usable limb once again ! After consulting the vet and our avian adviser Sue, I kept it confined to the coop for 5 days with no disturbance of any kind, and gave it painkiller medication once a day.

 It sat motionless for much of the time only moving to eat and drink.

Incredibly after the 5 days I let it into the Aviary to see it walk, using both legs and feet albeit with a limp. It can also paddle with the broken leg and I have seen it scratch its face with it, and jump down from a ramp.

 Sue was planning to take the duck into her Sanctuary where she has several one legged ducks, in the event that this duckling was going to end up the same way. I will now return this duckling to the river very soon.

With the arrival of the Cygnets, and the death of Alan the woodpigeon, this has been a bittersweet week for me.  

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