Bird Rescued from Drain in Hailsham

Rescuers were called out after a lady, on the Town Farm Estate in Hailsham, heard a flapping noise coming from a drain.

East Sussex Wildlife Rescue & Ambulance Service (WRAS) attended on site and at first couldn’t see anything in the drain. “The lady who called us had to go out, and said the bird had been flapping around in the water, however when we arrived we couldn’t see anything. However I noticed a pipe low down close to the water, which the bird might have been able to get into” said Trevor Weeks Duty Rescue Co-ordinator for WRAS.

Rescuers Trevor and Ellie had to use a crow bar to lift the drain at the corner of Phoenix Close and Observatory View in Hailsham.

A mobile phone was used to see inside the pipe revealing an adult starling inside.

“Luckily the pipe was only about 5 feet long and there was a drain cover on the pavement. We lifted the drain cover to get to the other end of the pipe. Ellie used a net to cover one end, whilst I stuck my head down the other drain and tried to reach the bird by putting my arm along the pipe” said Trevor.

Unfortunately the bird was too far along the pipe and the other drain was too narrow for Ellie to reach into the pipe. “There was no way I would be able to reach the bird and catch it so I needed to encourage the bird out the other end and into Ellie’s net. So I grabbed one of the drain keys and again stuck my head and arm down the drain and rattled it around.  To my relief the bird came out the other end and Ellie was able to catch the bird and get it secure” said Trevor.

The adult starling had a smell of oil on its feather from splashing around in the drain water. “We decided to bring the bird back to WRAS’s Casualty Centre at Whitesmith where Casualty Manager Katie Nunn Nash gave the bird a shower and wash, before a gentle blow dry” said Trevor.

After being cleaned up the bird was bedded down at the centre and given a hearty meal and left to recover.

“Mid afternoon after several hours of recovery, the bird was in a much better condition and flying well, so we decided to take the bird back to Phoenix Close and release him back home. Ellie released the starling from its carrier to fly off down the road flying really strongly. It was really nice to seem him flying back to the wild” said Trevor.


Video without text and logo for media use:

These videos are free for use by local media to East Sussex, like BBC Local news and ITV Meridian News, and also to local radio stations and newspapers. For all other use please contact Trevor Weeks on 01825873003 or 07931523958.

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