February 15, 2010

News - Feb 2010 (Swan Rescue at Fairlop Waters)

Swan Rescue at Fairlop Waters
On Saturday 13th Feb 2010, 17 of us were just starting out on a 3 hour bird watching walk around Fairlop Waters. Not long after leaving the car-park, and while looking at the various birds on the lake (by the jetties), one of last summers brood of Mute Swans joined our party (on foot), making feeble attempts to peck at the gloves and coat of one the birders. The young Mute Swan looked weak, and underweight. Matters were made worse when a dog-walker made no attempt to stop her Staff from threatening the defenseless bird, it seemed an attack was moments away. Tajinder encouraged the dog-owner to controll her dog and leave the area, and then phoned a friend who arranged to rescue the Swan.

This Swan was pushed off of the main boating lake a few weeks ago by its parents in an attempt to encourage its independence, and retain their (large) territory. It spend a lot of its time 'swimming' on a puddle on the golf course, just a few metres away from the lake, and within view of it. And frequently returned to the lake when the adults were 'out'. This inexperience, combined with the lack of food due to the prolonged cold spell had rendered the swan starving.

The rescuer later reported: "He was ravenously hungry, eating a lot of mixed corn. He was taken to the sanctuary on Sunday by Laurent, so had spent overnight in our bath due to not having our usual keeping place because of building works."

We hope that this speedy action will give the swan a good chance of survival, and that it will soon be released back into the 'slightly warmer' wild.

Our thanks to Tajinder Lachhar, Simon Litt, Barbara Edwards, Ian Cranston and Laurent for their speedy action, and to those looking after our Swan! ... If we hear any info on its progress we will let you know..

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