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Belfast Live
Belfast Live
Shauna Corr

Baby swan saved from NI Water treatment plant tank after fox rescued from same site

A cygnet has been saved from a water treatment plant tank in a second wildlife rescue at the same location by the Ulster Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

The animal rights charity say they were alerted to the infant swan "in distress" by staff at the NI Water plant in Dunmurry on November 17.

USPCA officers also rescued a fox from the same site in August.

Read more: Poultry restriction zones imposed in NI after bird flu cases found in Monaghan

Wildlife Rescue Officer at the charity, Phil McCartney, was part of the team that saved the swan from being 'perilously trapped'.

He said: "When I arrived at the scene it was clear to see there was no way this unfortunate swan would be rescued without assistance. Whilst it was afraid as I approached, it did not struggle when I had it in my arms.

Young swan rescued from water treatment plant (USPCA)

"If the bird had been left without USPCA intervention, it would have sadly died from starvation and exhaustion.”

“Thankfully, the cygnet was rescued and fully checked over before being released into the Lagan,” added Phil.

The charity also praised the quick actions of staff at the plant. They said the baby swan had "made its way into one of the larger tanks and in moving through the different tunnels between tanks, it had ended up in a filled water containment area with no exit - this effectively trapped the poor infantile bird".

USPCA Development Manager, Colleen Tinnelly said: “We are very thankful to all of the staff at the water treatment plant in Dunmurry for alerting our team to this situation.

"Sadly, wildlife often finds themselves in difficult circumstances which leads to serious injury or even death – thank you to the quick actions of the staff and our wildlife rescue officer, they were able to save this young swan life. Should members of the public come across injured wildlife, please contact the USPCA on 028 3025 1000."


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