Latest News We now have a YouTube channel with a number of new videos taken by Elfrieda Waren. Look on our Photos/Video Page. ******************************* "Swan Notes" News items written by Trust members and volunteers and usually appearing in the “Berwick Advertiser" newspaper each  week. Unfortunately, sister newspaper the “Berwickshire News” are no longer following suit. For those unable to read these items, and  those living outside the Berwick area, here are the last few editions.. 14th September 2017 This week I don’t really know where to start because after a quiet few days the weekend suddenly had Kay running around chasing her tail. Mike was off on Saturday so Kay Dick and myself met at 8a.m. to get a good start on the cleaning and feeding. We all had other things lined up for later in the day so decided to get an early start and be able to be away just after 10 a.m. We found when we arrived that a hedgehog Kay had brought in from Coldingham on Friday night had died. We have never seen a hedgehog with so many ticks. Kay took off 160+ but was worried the poor thing would survive so decided to do the rest on Saturday morning. The majority of the ticks were on its back between the prickles and she had only removed half of them. They were sizeable ticks and when we checked the hogs gums they were white. The ticks had bled the animal to death. We left the Trust on time but Kay waited for a while as the ringer had arranged to call to ring the Sparrow Hawk before release then she would be free until 5 p.m. when she met Barbara for the night check and feeding. For Kay however, the day was not that easy, whilst she was waiting for the ringer there was a loud rap on the door and a man stood on the step holding a young Heron,(whenever I see anyone with a Heron it reminds me of Alice in Wonderland and the Flamingo croquet mallets) the bird was very thin and just a young one. The R.S.P.C.A. were  aware of the bird but could not find it. While she was settling in the bird and with it still tucked under her arm she took a phone call about a Swan on the bridge causing trouble amongst the traffic. The first caller was a bit upset when Kay said it would take  15 minutes to get there as she had to deal with the Heron first. Several more calls came in before she reached the bridge the last caller said the Swan had been hit by a moped. The Swan looked fine although shaken up probably by the number of people surrounding it. Kay quickly bagged up the bird to take to the Rollo Centre  for a rest and some food. One of the bystanders again raised the subject of the Goose which hangs around the slipway. We have people keeping an eye on the Goose and it is fine although we suspect its wings have been clipped so it is unable to fly but it is perfectly healthy. She took the Swan back and checked it over for injuries and finding none made up another bucket of food and gave the bird the small pond area. After that came an array of needy wildlife. Two Wood Pigeons a racing Pigeon, a Hedgehog and a little Duckling only about two days old. We had only been saying on Friday that things were slowing down and we would not need any more chick crumb. That’s where we made the mistake! More news next week Pat Goff 7th September 2017 As autumn creeps in with the chillier September mornings, there are subtle but noticeable changes in the behaviour of wild animals after the frantic breeding activity of the summer. I think I may be seeing these changes at first hand in Dixon, the little female hedgehog I took into my garden three or four months ago. Dixon had come into the trust late last autumn with an injury to her nose and breathing difficulties. Despite treatment, her wheeziness never really improved, and in the spring it was decided that Dixon wouldn’t cope with being released into the wild like the other 30 or so we’d cared for. Normally hedgehogs range over a large area to find their food, so I would have to keep feeding her as the garden would be far too restricted to provide enough sustenance. I’d hoped she’d repay me by ridding the hostas of slugs and snails, but I think she prefers the nightly ‘ready meal’ of meaty pet food and mealworms.  Since the colder nights began, Dixon has been eating less, and I’ve also found she’s been pulling grass into her box to create a cosy inner layer of bedding. It’s very early for her to be thinking about hibernation, but I’m wondering if she’s more sensitive to cooler temperatures because she spent the winter months in the trust recovery room and it’s her first real experience of nippy nights? As a precaution, I’ve taken Dixon into the trust and Kay has put her on a short course of worming treatment, so that just in case she is off to sleep for the winter, she’ll be in the best condition possible and will have a good chance of waking up healthy in the spring. This week I have two or three ‘announcements’ to end with: Pat has asked me to reassure everyone who has called the trust about the greylag goose at the Slipway that there is nothing amiss with the bird; it’s perfectly well, she says, and we’re monitoring the situation just to make certain it’s OK. There’s another big PLEASE for food donations for the animals; we’re always in need of dried mealworms and meaty (not the fish flavours) dog food for the hedgehogs and bread for the ever-hungry cygnets and eider ducks. While bread on its own isn’t good for them, mixed in with grains, lettuce, grass and more mealworms it provides a balanced diet. Ideally the bread needs to be as fresh as possible, still moist and with no signs of mould. One final ‘heads up’ is advance notice of the trust Christmas Fair, which will take place on Saturday December 2. It’ll be just the thing to get us all into a festive mood, with fun activities and games, delicious cakes and refreshments, and of course some unique gift ideas to delight friends and family and help support the trust at the same time. Make a note on your calendar and more details will follow. Elfrieda Waren 31st August 2017 Another month almost gone. Time does fly. The swans and cygnets are growing well and we hope to release the two swans together with eight or nine cygnets (depending on their wing feather growth) before the end of September. That will leave three or four cygnets that will probably be with us for the winter. The group have made a nice family group to release and since the cygnets were partially raised in the wild they all should adapt nicely to the river. They love it when their pond water is changed to nice fresh clean water which is done on a weekly basis as there are so many on the pond. It is expensive in water charges but absolutely essential for the well-being of the birds. It is also a hard task for those of us dealing with the swans. It is tricky to move them from the pond to the Lomax aviary and the strip of land which provides plenty of grass for them to graze. The extra land that Barrie Mortimer organised a few years ago is now coming into its own. Each year we have very different needs and this year with all the cygnets the extra land has been so useful. It has been grassed over and the swans and cygnets all love to graze. This year Brian has no need to cut the grass. One day with all the swans and cygnets in this area has mowed the grass superbly. Here I must thank everyone who has kindly donated lettuce and bread it is very much appreciated by us and the swans. The heavier hedgehogs are being moved outside to Hotchi Mews before their release during the next month so they can find their own territory and hibernate for the winter. The smaller ones will remain here and may be allowed to hibernate if they reach satisfactory weight. The new Claw and Talon room has proved invaluable as we have had patients in there since it was completed. There was a buzzard with a broken leg which the vet pinned who was making an awful mess of the room despite all the papers we put on the floor.  The vet allowed him out in an aviary but he had to stay where he was until an aviary became free. We are obviously having NHS problems with bed finding. As soon as the Barn owl was released on Saturday the buzzard was allowed the big aviary to strengthen up. The release of one tawny owl allowed the tawny owl that came in with a neck injury to move into the Lomax aviary. When he was moved here he was not sure where he was and we watched as a little slug moved over a metal bar used to hold down the paper keeping the area clean. He peered at the slug as you can see in the photo. Never having seen one before he tasted it and shook his head as he didn’ft like the taste. I just had to take photo’fs. That’fs all I can fit in this week. Thank you to everyone who called to see us at BARK dog show. We raised £105.00 and had an enjoyable day.  Thanks for all your support we really do appreciate it.  Pat Goff