Tuesday, 26 May 2009

Just call me Mrs St Francis of Assisi

I managed to save a little life today - something hit my sitting room window (which is on the first floor) and plummeted down to the patio. I saw Damian (the cat who lives both with us and his 'real' mum 3 doors down) suddenly shoot off to investigate. I leapt to my feet to see what it was and it was a Blue Tit fledgling that was now sitting on one of my large pots. Unfortunately Damian got to it before I did and was off down the side alleyway with it in his mouth. I raced after him and, extremely fortunately, managed to get him to drop it. Poor thing was completely stunned, lying on its back, breathing rapidly - I didn't hold out much hope for it. I carried it back into the house, cradling it in my hands while it started to come round.

The Husband and I didn't really know what to do with it but he suggested putting it on one of our suspended bird feeder tables to see if it would fly off. So I did, by now it was the right way round but still a bit dazed. I kept popping out every 5 minutes or so because I was so concerned. It still had the fluff and big yellow mouth of a young fledgling and I wasn't at all sure that it would have a good outcome. In the end I decided I would have to take it to a wildlife rescue centre. We used to have one near us at Hydestile, Godalming but it closed a few years ago. The nearest one now is Wildlife Aid at Leatherhead which you may have seen on the TV programme 'Wildlife SOS'. I rang them, told them what happened and they said to pop it in a box and bring it over (they're about 30 mins drive from me). I found a suitable box, lined it with paper from the shredder, made some holes and went to fetch it. I could see that the suspended bird feeder it had been sitting in was now full of pigeons and collared doves, so was very worried that the little Blue Tit would be squashed. I shooed them off but it wasn't there! I heard 'peep, peep' by my feet and saw that it was now in a bush on the ground - whether it had flown there or been pushed out I don't know, but Damian was suddenly very interested so there was no time to lose. It had got itself tangled in the branches so I had to very carefully extricate it & put it gently in the box. I then persuaded The Husband to drive us all over to Leatherhead.

All the way there I could feel the Blue Tit moving around in the box and peeping away so I knew it wasn't in too bad a condition. When we got there, they had just taken in a parakeet that had been found at the side of a main road and a pigeon that had flown into a conservatory. We opened the box and the little thing was sitting there, bright as ninepence, obviously none the worse for its spectacularly traumatic day. They said they'd check it over but it looked like it was fine and it would be released. These people do such a wonderful job and it's all funded by contributions from the public (yes, I left them a donation). Sorry there's no pictures but speed was of the essence and taking photos was the last thing on my mind. I hope the little thing realises how lucky it was.....!


KittyB said...

Bravo! Well done for saving a little life. Lovely story - and thanks for the link to the blog from Purplecoo, I love the dandelion picture-header and will come back to read more soon.

mountainear said...

Aww! Well done you - glad to hear all turned out well. Lucky bird!