Swan Rescue is affiliated with many other societies and organisations, some that are dedicated to birds, some to animals, some to wildlife in general, and some who are just prepared to render assistance when requested. Here are just a few of these good friends…
Wychbold Swan Rescue
Lead poisoning is once again on the increase!!
For the last two years, Jan Harrigan, founder of Wychbold Swan Rescue near Droitwich has been taking blood samples from almost every full grown swan coming into her care from wherever, and for whatever reason. These samples are sent to Keele University for analysis. This reveals 65% of these birds are ‘leaded’.
Over the years an invaluable network of helpers has been built up; this includes other rescue organisations throughout the country, various canoe clubs and the Sea Cadets who are always extremely supportive, and of course individual members of the public who have recognised the need, and have wanted to become involved.
Severn Area Rescue Association
“…called to attend two separate shooting incidents involving a pair of adult swans, and a juvenile swan…
…during the height of the floods in October 1999…”
Statutory bodies, government departments,
utilities and local authorities…
Our involvement with swans has enabled us to build good working relationships with the Enviromental Agency, the Department of the Environment, the Ministry of Agriculture (now DEFRA), electricity companies and local authorities. Swan Rescue South Wales is contracted to Bridgend County Borough Council to deal with all water bird problems on the Wilderness and Pwll-y-Waun ponds in Porthcawl.
Angling related incidents present by far the most serious threat to water birds. Read more on the concerns and how the Newport Angling Club ‘tackled’ this issue…
A contribution to the plight of wildlife…
Angling-related incidents present by far the most serious threat to water birds. This can cause a great deal of friction between the rescuers and the fishermen, and so the possibility of any kind of understanding being reached between the groups is practically non-existent. Indifference to the plight of wildlife, and ineffective management by individual angling clubs have been found to be contributory factors in this lack of understanding. Added to this is the fact there is rarely a sufficiently unbiased person on their committees with a genuine concern for both sides who is able to liaise between rescuers and anglers.
Lliswerry Pond, Newport
Lliswerry pond in Newport, South Wales was created many years ago when quarrying excavations struck an underground stream which flooded the site so creating a wonderful place for wildlife. Unfortunately, it also became a popular fishing area when the owners, Newport Borough Council as it was then, leased the pond to the Newport Angling Club. The club was run by a group of men who had little interest in wildlife and little control over their members who fished the waters. Each year, the resident swan family had to be rescued and taken for costly veterinary treatment due to being caught up in carelessly discarded fishing tackle. Sadly, not all of them survived. No-one in the club cared or were interested. As far as they were concerned, the swans shouldn’t be there. The area not only became a black spot for fishing related incidents but also a rubbish dump with graffiti scrawled on every available surface. The club bailiffs (when there were any) would only walk the lake in pairs and never after dark. Over the years most of the club’s committee members either retired, lost interest or ‘moved on’.
However, around 2006/2007 things started to change for the better following the successful submission of a grant application by Newport Anglers and supported by Alway Community Association to the European Grants Section of Newport City Council (which it had since become) to completely refurbish the area and make it a suitable attraction for local residents to use. The grant received was £92,000 supported by a financial investment from the council of around £20,000. The pond was cleaned and dredged and the banks were stabilised. The work also included a metal safety fence around the perimeter, a well constructed walkway suitable for disabled people and benches. The whole area underwent a complete transformation from a rubbish dump to a clean tranquil site.
The day to day care of the pond changed and now comes under New City Anglers managed by Pat Bill who is not just a fisherman but he also cares greatly about the wildlife and particularly the swans. Of course, there will always be accidents with lost and discarded fishing tackle but Pat will either call us if the rescue is difficult or launch the boat and deal with it himself. Most importantly, if he believes the incident was intentional or caused through carelessness, the angler concerned will be banned from fishing the pond either indefinitely or for a specified number of weeks.
Over the many years we have been involved with the swans and other water birds on Lliswerry pond the financial cost to us in dealing with the incidents has been enormous and with no offers of help from Newport Angling Club. However, that has now changed and Pat makes every effort to reimburse us our costs by organising fishing competitions. To us, he is the Conservation Officer for New City Anglers – every club should have one.
Our network of helpers include the Sea Cadets, who are always extremely supportive.
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