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.. 18th July 2019 Kay is being kept very busy by hand feeding several tiny hoglets. During the past couple of weeks we have been hearing tales of woe from people disturbing by accident hedgehog nests hidden away. One family we managed to keep together and the youngsters are now independent of their mother which was very satisfactory. Mum has now been returned but we will keep the babies until they reach an acceptable weight. At the Rollo Centre we have eight tiny hogs indoors plus three outside and a couple Kay has at home, so already the numbers are increasing. We are hoping that we can get our supporters to subscribe to buy more little huts for the winter as last year we had nowhere near enough. On Saturday the ringer came and checked out our Tawny Owl babies. We have four. I have spoken before about ‘red’ Tawny Owls being much more feisty than the browner ones. Why this should be I have no idea but when an adult bird comes in we know if it is of the ‘red’ variety we are going to find it harder to handle. The picture this weeks shows three of the young Tawny Owls. The one on the right is a ‘red’ bird. I hope the colour comes out in print so you can easily see the difference. Our very unusual North American Peregrine has been found a home with a  falconer. The bird was a cross between a Peregrine and another hawk so it could not be released into the wild. Although the bird was spotted on cliffs around Berwick 12 months ago still wearing leather anklets, it had none when brought in to us. It had survived in the wild and was very wary of us and did not appear at all tame. The falconer has reported to us that he is now handling the bird and will be flying it shortly. It is now microchipped and will be fitted with a tracking device. The little Leveret that I was bottle feeding is still growing well and is eating grass and weeds he is currently 380 grams, so growing just as he should. I am the only person to feed him and I shall find it very hard to never see him again once he is not needing milk, but he must not become imprinted. I know it's best for him and hope to get a look at him before he is released. This summer we are using our volunteers to take turns at answering the phone. This means we are able to take calls 24/7 from May to September. We may not be able to come straight out for casualties, but we are able to offer advice. Also like last year we will take in Herring Gulls from roofs. but are not able to collect them Our next Open Day is on Saturday 3rd August 10.30 am till 2 pm. This will be followed at 2.30 pm. By our A.G.M. All welcome. Pat Goff 11th July 2019 The Rollo Centre seems to be brimming with new life at the moment  – and it comes in all shapes and sizes. There are four tawny owlets, not siblings but rescued from different places, all perching happily together in the Lomax outdoor aviary. There’s a mother hedgehog in one of the smaller outdoor aviaries, currently bringing up her three little hoglets, and four young crows are part hopping, part flying up and down another large aviary. Meanwhile in the recovery room there’s a little leveret – a baby hare – and on Wednesday volunteer Una brought back two tiny wren fledglings after an intensive feeding regime at home. More youngsters are coming in all the time; this morning Sandra from Paxton brought in two young hogs she’d found outside during the day, lying on their sides. She’d thought they were close to death, but collected them up and offered them a little bowl of water. When she called us, both hoglets had had a drink and were standing up, so she kept them warm with a makeshift hot water bottle wrapped in a towel overnight and brought them into us next day. Their fate still hangs in the balance; they aren’t weaned and will need hand feeding. But if Sandra hadn’t intervened at that critical time, it wouldn’t have been too long before the young hogs died of dehydration. With a few simple actions, we can all be wildlife ‘rescuers’. These long, dry summer days are especially dangerous for young hogs who only have a few hours of darkness to grub around for food and find drinking water. Putting out nightly bowls of fresh water and meaty (not fishy) pet food will make all the difference to their survival. Before cutting long grass or moving garden rubbish, take a few minutes to have a careful prod around to make sure you’re not disturbing new mums with nests of hoglets. Create gaps in fencing or gates so that hogs can move easily through the neighbourhood on their nightly search for food. And those blue slug pellets: please don’t use them. From last month, garden centres were required by law to remove all products containing metaldehyde from their shelves. Gardeners are allowed to continue using metaldehyde pellets for another year. But why would you, knowing that they’re directly responsible for the death of the hog unfortunate enough to eat a slug that has in turn consumed a blue pellet – not to mention the babies waiting for mum to return? I’d say please find your alternatives to snail and slug control now rather than scattering your leftover metaldehyde pellets for the next 12 months. There are plenty of solutions, both chemical and organic. There’s another chance to have a ‘behind the scenes’ look at the work we do and see the animals in our care at an Open Day on Saturday August 3 from 10.30am until 2pm. Following that the trust’s AGM will take place from 2.30pm. Elfrieda Waren 4th July 2019 Last week we were able to move out some of the babies that have had to be kept in the warm indoors or in very restricted small aviaries outside. Our two little Shelducks have been in the little pond for a few days and will move to join the Cygnets on the big pond when the water is changed on Monday. It is lovely to see how they all love the larger pond. The first thing they do is rush through the water and have a good bath, especially when the water has been freshly changed. Water is one of our big expenditures. When we have  birds on the pond and it has to be changed frequently it bumps up our water charges We are looking into a filtration system of some kind, but I dare say it will be prohibitively expensive. Our family of hedgehogs survived their ordeal of having their nest dug up. They are now in a pen that gives them a bit of roaming room. The hoglets were weighed last week and averaged 130 grams each so they are doing very well. Mum was 1169 grams so quite fat. She had been a wild hedgehog so it just shows that they can get quite big if there is good and plentiful food about. Our four young Tawnies are coming along nicely finding their own food and flying quite well. They are still very downy along with their feathers and as other birds are released they can be moved into a bigger aviary to perfect their flying. We have also had several fledgling and nestling Sparrows in. Fortunately they are taking food readily from us, but it is a very time consuming process as they need feeding every half an hour or so from six in the morning to ten at night. They are at home with me and I take them down to the Rollo Centre in the mornings when any volunteer that passes them can give them a feed. We also have a tiny Leveret which I am bottle feeding twice a day. He has just started to nibble on grass and weed leaves. It took a couple of days to get him to take the bottle but he goes at it with gusto now. He sucks for only about ten to fifteen seconds and then will not take any more. I think this must be because their mothers visit them only briefly in their form. Normally a Leveret in a field should be left well alone as they are left by their mothers for most of the day, retuning a couple of times to suckle the young. In the case of our tiny one cows were in the field and were seen to be trampling something and they had killed two leverets and this one was found trying to escape. He is also at home with me so my utility room is now a wildlife nursery. The picture this week shows Little Bun our name for the leveret. He sits so quiet and still and looks like a little fruit bun in the cage. Its Elfie next week. Pat Goff