Friday, July 11, 2008

Poor Little Cygnet.


Yesterday we stopped by Hatchetts Pond on our way home from walking the dogs. The Swan family was way over the other side of the pond, but the sun had come out and it was drying our wet clothes , so we decided to have an Ice cream. We were just about to leave when we noticed a solitary cygnet at the back of the carpark.He looked very forlorn , but we persuaded him to go back down to the pond thinking he had just got separated from the family. The Cob who had been ignoring the people who were feeding the gulls (This was very unusual as he is very greedy) steamed across the pond , feathers puffed up intent on attacking the little cygnet. The little cygnet fled across the carpark and hid. Some holiday makers told us that they had been at the pond two days ago when they saw the cob trying to drown one of the cygnets. The cygnet did not seem sick or injured just very frightened. We tried ringing the Forestry Commission to speak to a keeper , but when they seemed disinterested and unable to give us the number of Swan Rescue we decided to get it ourselves. A quick phone call to Karens Husband and we had the number.They said they would send some one out.meanwhile the poor little cygnet was being worried by some dogs, someone picked the cygnet up and another person had a box so we were able to keep him safe. Eventually a Forestry Commission Keeper arrived , having been alerted by Swan rescue and took the cygnet away.
Today I rang Swan Rescue and was told that they had the cygnet, there appears to be nothing wrong with it and in the Autumn when it can fly they will release it at Christchurch. Until then it is being kept with several other rescued cygnets and will be looked after.
If you remember back in May I told you there was another Swan family at the other end of the lake with three cygnets and Swan rescue told me that the cygnets had been killed by this same cob and they had to relocate the Parents. Sadly this is normal behaviour for Swans when a pair invades anothers territory, however swans are normally good parents and they do not know why this cob should now attack its own cygnet. Yesterday there were only 5 cygnets with the parents so another one is missing, because there were 7. Swan rescue are keeping an eye on the situation anyway because they had to remove a fishing hook from the Pens foot about a week ago.

8 comments:

Pete said...

i once watch a swan attack some mallard ducklings. Mummy Mallard was brilliant throwing herself in the way and eventually they all got away

Britt-Arnhild said...

What an interesting story Mary.

Barrie said...

I got pointed to this blog by a Google Alert for "swan rescue". Its always nice to hear how much ordinary people worry and care about swans. I am a wildlife rescuer on the England/Scotland border and have made up a list of wildlfe rescue groups at http://groups.msn.com/ukwildliferescue because so many people were unable to get any response from the RSPCA. I hope you don't mind me advertising the site, but it is definitely non-commercial.
Keep up the good work.
Barrie

Mo said...

I'm so glad you were able to help the cygnet in distress and that it's now safe.

As we saw on Springwatch this year, birds have strange ways of behaving towards their young. Remember the male swallow who threw all the babies out the nest!

Mary said...

Barrie thank you for the link to your site. I will check it out . it is useful to have some links as it can be very difficult finding the right people to help in these situations. There are many groups willing to take injured animals you just have to find them.

abehap said...

how sad - Mary is this Cob killing all the male babies? would be interesting to find out if he is.

pilgrimchick said...

Good for you saving the poor thing. I am sorry to hear that the proper channels were so unenthusiastic about helping, but it certainly is in a safe place now and will get a chance to grow up.

Jan said...

Aww Mary, what a sad story, glad the cygnet is now in safe hands. Also thanks barrie for that link, I will save it, often could do with some help and advice here.