Swan rescued and rehomed in Southport after crash landing in Ashton backyard

Posted on - 21st September, 2020 - 7:00am | Author - | Posted in - Ashton-on-Ribble, Preston News, Wildlife and Conservation
Julie rescuing the cygnet
Jennifer and Julie rescuing the cygnet in the Ashton backyard

A cygnet has been rescued and rehomed in Southport after it crash-landed in an Ashton backyard.


It appears the bird was one of the nine cygnets that were born on the Lancaster Canal in spring this year.

The rescue was carried out on Saturday (19 September) by Julie Denise Tattler and Jennifer Coupe from Noah’s Ark Cat Rescue and Sanctuary based in Tarleton.

A video posted to the sanctuary’s Facebook page shows Julie catching the cygnet in the backyard in Eldon Street before releasing it on Marine Lake in Southport.

Julie said: “The man who found the cygnet had just gone to take his rubbish out.

“It had obviously flown the nest, crash-landed, and then was stranded as it didn’t have the space it needed to take off.

“I got a message on Friday but didn’t pick it up until Saturday. I’d never rescued a swan before so I contacted Swan Rescue in Southport and Ainsworth Wildlife Rescue in Bury for advice.

“We didn’t know where it had come from, and decided the safest bet for releasing it was Marine Lake, as it’s massive with loads of swans.

“I also rang the RSPCA beforehand. They said they’d visited but hadn’t been able to gain access at the property, and wouldn’t be able to go again until the following day.”

Read more: Famous Lostock Hall cockerel sparks local controversy

Julie said the cygnet seemed in good health, but that she was worried about it spending a second night in the yard and the risk of it damaging its wings if it tried taking off.

After catching the cygnet, Julie wrapped it in a sheet and put it in a crate with another sheet over. She said the bird was calm throughout the 50-minute journey to Southport.

Julie catching the cygnet
Julie catches the cygnet

Once released on to the lake, the cygnet approached two adult swans.

The cygnet being released on to Marine Lake
The cygnet being released on to Marine Lake
The cygnet in its new Southport home
The cygnet in its new Southport home
The cygnet approached two adult swans on the lake
The cygnet approached two adult swans on the lake

Despite the apparent success of the rescue, Julie said she’d received some negative comments online, with people saying the cygnet should have been taken to the canal.

Read more: Pet sparrow from Deepdale reunited with family after going missing

Julie said: “We have a tendency to humanise animals, but it’s not like that. The swan was ready to fly the nest.

“The advice from the experts was I would be risking the swan’s life if I took it to the wrong place on the canal as it’s so narrow there.

“When we set the swan free at the lake it went off with two adult swans. They were rubbing necks. Even if it doesn’t continue to be accepted by those two it will find others.

“People were saying the seagulls at the end of the video were attacking it, but that’s rubbish. The lake is renowned for seagulls. They were trying to get bread that had been thrown in. If we had put it in the water and it had been attacked I would’ve jumped in.

“I’ve had a couple of messages from wildlife experts who said well done, and most people have been supportive.”

Preston photographer Donna Clifford posted photos of the cygnet on Facebook after visiting Southport yesterday.

She said: “Hearing one of the Lancaster Canal cygnets had been rescued and seeing a video of it being taken and released in Southport yesterday, we had to take a trip over this afternoon. Pleased we luckily managed to find it settling in to its new surroundings.”

Read more: Latest news and updates from Blog Preston

What do you think of the rescue? Let us know in the comments.

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