You can tell it is almost summer here at Gwel an Mor when there are more animals that you can shake a stick at!
You can’t have failed to see all the lovely press on our adorable new rescue fox Forrest Stump. If you haven’t heard of him, let me recap. Forrest was brought to our ranger Gary Zammit having been found at four weeks old, cold and alone in a puddle in field in Newquay. Forrest had had his tail ripped off, presumably by another animal. He was taken by a lovely tourist to the nearest vet who, of course, called Gary.
After much care, support and around the clock care, Forrest has bounced back to health; he’s had a little help along the way from his best friend Barney.
Barney himself has a rather unusual story – he was discovered in the barn at Feadon Farm two years ago, just before Christmas. Here’s the twist. Barney is also missing his tail.
It was instant love with the pair and now they happily spend hours playing together. Forrest is due to join his new big brothers and sister, Todd, Copper and Meadow in the next few weeks – you’ll be able to see him on our wildlife experiences.
Watch a video of Forrest here
But there have been even more new temporary ‘residents’ joining us over the past few days. Two rooks, two blue tit chicks, a barn owl baby and, fingers crossed, one of our hedgehogs, Spiny Norma might also be pregnant! As you can imagine, life is rather busy in the Zammit household.
Gary has been hand-feeding a blue-tit chick that was brought to the farm having been rescued from the clutches of a cat. Fortunately the bird was in overall good health, but now has to stay at the farm until it is strong enough to join a new family. Gary will be taking the fledging down to the woods soon to release it near another nest where it is hoped that a new blue tit family will adopt the little fella.
A short time later, another blue tit also had a narrow escape from a feline foe and ended up at Feadon Farm – he too awaits release when he is ready to fly the nest.
It was thought for a little while that Rodney, our tame rook, would be getting a new friend or two with the arrival of two crows, but fortunately the pair of cheeky (and noisy) birds soon proved to be in perfect health and so will be released very soon.
Vigilance and an important message is also being spread this week through the local media as a barn owl was brought to the farm by a local runner. He spotted the very poorly bird by the roadside and brought it straight to Gary.
The bird was covered in cooking oil that made it impossible for the bird to fly, hunt or keep warm. Sadly it died less than ten minutes after it was brought in. You can see the full story here, but please be warned it is not for the faint-hearted.
Finally a second owlet was brought to the farm last week, also discovered by a runner. This little chap was thought to be injured, but in fact he was ok, unfortunately the well-meaning member of the public did not leave their name or an idea of where the owl was found. As there was nothing wrong with the bird it could have been returned to its home had a location been known.
Tawny owls leave the nest before they can fly and the mother will carry on feeding them, this often leads to people mistakenly believing that they have been abandoned. The owl has now been handed to the Cornish Bird of Prey Centre (www.cornishbirdsofprey.co.uk) who will continue to care for it and then release it.
So when we say it’s been a busy day on the farm, we’re not kidding!