Fire engine called out to ‘save’ a seagull from the roof of the Dartmouth police station last week.

By Richard Whitehouse   |   Local Democracy Reporter   |
Thursday 3rd August 2017 2:32 pm
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A member of the public contacted the RSPCSA about a ‘seagull’ which appeared trapped on the flat roof of the police station.

Sargent Iain Simons followed up and said: “I have previously spoken to the police wild life crime officer (WCO) about the bird, as both its wings are protruding and it appeared unable to fly.

“Firstly, the WCO informed me that there is no such thing as a sea gull. It is a herring gull. After being put right, we monitored the bird, as it was still growing and being fed. Despite this, the RSPCA’s action was to call out the Fire Service who attended from Dartmouth in an appliance.”

A spokesman for the Fire Service said: “We do have a policy of attending small animal rescues when requested by the RSPCA. We make an assessment in each case and will make a rescue if the animal is in distress or we are concerned that a member of the public might put themselves at risk by attempting a rescue themselves.”

Sargent Simons continued: “I discussed the welfare of the bird with the Fire Chief and as it was still being fed and appeared healthy, it clearly was not trapped and was not in any immediate need of veterinary care.

“We decided to leave the bird on the roof and I agreed to make some enquiries with the appropriate animal welfare group. I contacted Devon Birds and on Friday afternoon and Roger Little from Devon Birds attended the station.”

As the gull walked and squawked, loudly, around the roof, Mr Little, commented: “It is unusual for the wings to be protruding out from the side of the bird.”

He decided to safely remove the gull from the roof and took it to Furzeland Animal Sanctuary in Abbotskerswell, who specialize in Herring gulls.

To reassure the concerned member of the public who initially contacted the RSPCA, Roger Little from Devon Birds informed Sargent Simons that, having taken the gull to Furzeland Animal Sanctuary, it was unusual for the wings to be protruding but it was perfectly fine.

The gull is now being cared for with one hundred and fifty nine other gulls in the sanctuary and will be released once it it big enough to fly.

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