February 24th, 2005


Animal Ambulance.

This morning I had a rather distressed fellow rescuer with a box on my doorstep. She'd just rescued a peewee from an entanglement.

The bird was badly tangled in string and dangling from a high place. She called Country Energy and they arrived in ten minutes with the Nifty Lift cherry picker and a crew of 3 to rescue the bird. (I've said before the Country Energy mob are Good Guys.) The string had amputated the bird's left foot, which now dangled below the stump, hel there by a tendon and the string. The flesh had been stripped away from the stump leaving just the bone.

I took the bird and said I'd deal with it. And I did.

I rang the zoovets, explained what had happened, and Ben The Vet said "Oh! Is that all! Amputations Are Us."

Twenty minutes later the vets were examining the peewee. Ben made that curious sucking-in whistle that shop owners make when they mean "These are hard to get and I don't have one. I'll order it in but it'll take at least a week." He shook his head and said "Ooh. Bugger."

Tanya the Nurse shook her head, made the curious sucking-in whstle and said "Ooh. Nasty." Normally they would euthanase a bird like this (ie badly injured and as common as egg-laying mammals) but I explained there was a lot of PR riding on this bird. Country Energy have an interest, the local paper got involved and the people who found the bird originally want to be involved in the rehab & release. A success would be good PR for the Zoo, WIRES and Country Energy.

The zoovets will See What They Can Do. Luckily peewees don't use their feet as their primary food-gathering things, like raptors do, and can quite easily adapt to a life of hopping instead of walking. We'll see.
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