Latest News Friends of WildlifeClick here to find out more about the Swan Trust Friends of Wildlife scheme.  "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.. 17th October 2019 I have been away for a week and today I tried to catch up with what had gone on whilst I was away. Before I went off we had in a Buzzard. It had been to the Vet and been checked out. It had a suspected broken wing. An x-ray showed that there were no fractures but there was quite a  large haematoma under the wing at the ‘elbow’ joint. The bird had flown into the side of a  car and had got caught in the air vents on the wheel arch so it was not surprising it had a  bruise or two. We put him in the undercover aviary which gave him room to move but not  enough space to damage himself. The next morning however, Dick noticed blood in the  aviary and on examining the bird we found that the haematoma had split. Not sure of the  best way to deal with it we sent it back up to the Vet. We picked him up later that day with a  beautiful strapping round the wing and a few feathers less. Oral antibiotics were prescribed  twice a day. Not an easy task on a bird as big as a buzzard! Fortunately the bird loved chicks  so the evening dose of medication was added to a chick. When I came back from holiday the bird was in the big aviary. The wing has healed very well  but as it has only half the feathers on the injured wing. All our volunteers have been asked  to look out for road-kill now as the bird will be with us until it grows new feathers which will  probably be in the spring.  We have 25 hogs in at the moment although this number may increase a little during the next few weeks as tiny hedgehogs come in  from a second litter in September. We still have about half of these hogs available to sponsor, so if you are looking for that special  present for someone or just want to treat yourself do come and sponsor one of our overwintering hogs. We now are able to take  payments by card.  We also have in a lovely Tawny Owl that somehow or other took a bash on the head. One eye has blood behind it so we have to keep a  check on it to make sure the sight is not affected. We hope it will make a full recovery. It hates being in a cage although it is quite a  large one but we want to make sure it is able to manage before he goes out into the undercover aviary. The photo shows him looking  quite cross after his cage was cleaned. I will update next week as it will be me writing again.  A date for your diary is 23rd November which is our Christmas Fair day. This will be at Berwick Baptist Church Hall on Golden Square.  Also our Christmas raffle tickets are on sale now.  Pat Goff 10th October 2019 Remember when I said rescue volunteers are lucky to get close to wild animals? Well sometimes we get a little too close for comfort.  We’d just finished the Wednesday morning cleaning and feeding routine recently when Jackie took a call from a man who was hedge  trimming at a farm near Swinton.  A ‘big grey bird with a very pointy beak’ had been sitting in a stubble field all morning, and it didn’t  appear to be flying. Wondering what on earth it could be, Jackie and I set off with a net, a towel,  some gauntlets and the largest pet carrier to hand. We were met by James Howie, the hedge trimmer who’d phoned, and he showed us where the  mystery bird had turned up.  It was a juvenile gannet, deep grey with white flecking, not injured but probably exhausted from  trying and failing to take off from stubble field.   Gannets are powerful seabirds, able to dive from a height of 30 metres at speeds of more than  60mph to pursue fish underwater. There had been bad weather the day before, so it’s possible  being young and inexperienced he’d lost his bearings and flown inland. I’d hoped my role was simply to take great action shots of the gannet’s rescue, but Jackie just  laughed and handed me the net. Following the gannet just caused him to move further away up the field, so we separated to approach him from both sides. After a bit of chasing and a few swipes of  the net we had him, but he wasn’t coming quietly.  Jackie was battling to control his flailing wings and I was trying to hold his bill closed; in a split  second, he could writhe free and clamp his bill round your fingers. I had leather gauntlets on, but  his hold was so strong I had to wrestle my hand out of the glove and leave it in the gannet’s bill. Even when we’d got him in the pet carrier, the gannet’s bill jabbed out furiously until we’d covered  him over, when he finally calmed down for the trip back to the Rollo Centre. Despite being renowned for their voracious appetites,  gannets won’t feed readily in captivity, so after 24 hours’ rest in an enclosure, our still very angry youngster was released on the coast  by trust supporter and fisherman Shaun Dixon.   Elfrieda Waren 3rd October 2019 Since the Open Day we have been busy releasing many of the young birds. Our four Cygnets, as heavy now as adult birds, were released last weekend when the weather was just perfect for them. The family that brought in the cygnets came to help bag them up and take  them to the river. The photo shows the children watching as the cygnets made their ungainly way down to the water. They thoroughly  enjoyed a bath before going off to explore their new surroundings. We have seen them a couple of times since and it is nice to know that they were still together as a group but were with other adult  swans which will help them learn their place on the river. It is nice when we have something to celebrate and a good release is one of  those times. Our four Tawny Owls were taken back to where they were found. All went off well and should be able to cope in the wild now. One Feral Pigeon was raised by the couple that found it and has been with us for  some time with other pigeons to stop it from flying to everyone that went into the  aviary. It has got much better but we decided to release this one at home. It has  found a handy ledge to roost on under our stables but we have to keep the doors  shut or it roosts inside. We are trying to ignore it and make it feed on the bird table  but it looks very much at home.  Hedgehogs are still coming in on a daily basis but we have some that are up to  weight and will be released this week. They will be about the last ones to go this year as all the others are too small to survive hibernation just yet.  We also managed to release a Buzzard that came in a couple of weeks ago with a  head trauma. It had probably been hit by a car. He must have had an awful  headache, although we were worried about his sight. When we put him in the big  aviary to check how he was doing he showed us that he could see perfectly well. He  performed a lovely display of agility flying from perch to perch and then going down  to the rabbit we had put down for his dinner. After three days the rabbit was a mere skeleton and he was ready to go. Another good  release. A final release was a Tawny Owl that was only in with us for three days. He was brought in after flying into a car and trapping one wing  in the windscreen wipers. After being untangled his wing was down a wee bit and he felt sorry for himself. The next morning he said he  was much better so we checked out his flying ability and he was taken back to where he was found. Pat Goff