Three rescuers and two ambulances rushed to the aid of a swan covered head to toe in blood today (Friday 9th Jan 2015).
Trevor Weeks MBE of Uckfield, Chris Riddington of Eastbourne and Tony Neads of Polegate all from East Sussex Wildlife Rescue & Ambulance Service (WRAS) rushed to the scene and found the swan in a field just west of the road between the village of Wartling and Pevensey Service Station.
“I’ve never seen anything quite like it” explained rescuer Chris, “ the swan was completely red, there were no white feathers at all, just blood everywhere.”
The rescuers effort were hampered due to flooding across the field.
On the first attempt at capture the swan managed to take off. “We were really surprised that the swan flew but as it was so windy it really didn’t take much more than the swan opening it wings in order to take off” said Trevor Weeks.
“The swan landed in a drainage dyke at the far side of the field, to get to there we had 1 large dyke and 3 smaller dykes to cross. The first three channels which are normally dry during the summer were about knee deep in water. When I got close to the swan it was in an awkward place for me to get to but an ideal place to try capture. There was only one thing for it and that was to take my jacket and fleece off and swim across the dyke” added Trevor.
“From the other side of the field we couldn’t believe what Trevor was doing and all of a sudden he just disappeared into the water and then reappeared as he climbed out again – we just thought ‘he’s nuts!’ and its freezing!” laughed Chris.
The rescue plan worked and Trevor was able to catch the swan successfully. “I was a bit worried about how I was going to get the swan back across the dyke, but with some help from Chris the swan was safely moved across the dyke and back to WRAS’s ambulances.” Said Trevor.
“Trevor was soaking wet from head to toe, and clearly very cold too, so after bedding the swan down in the ambulance and providing first aid , we wrapped Trevor in blankets and both were driven back to WRAS’s Casualty Centre for treatment” said rescuer Tony.
Back at WRAS’s Casualty Centre the swan was checked over and found to have numerous deep cuts one of which was a venus bleed. “We had to apply a trauma gauze to the lower beak to help stop the bleeding which had to be taped in place. After seeking advice from the Swan Sanctuaries Veterinary Team we decided to send the swan up to their specialist vets to assess. But we hope the swan will be suitable for returning to the area once fit and well” said Trevor.
Trevor Weeks – 01825873003 or 07931523958
Video and photos taken by WRAS.Share this!