On the mend – an injured peregrine falcon found hiding in a farmyard
PUBLISHED: 08:00 03 February 2018 | UPDATED: 10:25 03 February 2018
Archant Norfolk 2018
Widely acknowledged as the fastest bird on earth, peregrine falcons usually make their homes atop city skyscrapers or high on cliff faces. However one of their kind, very rarely seen in Norfolk, is now calling Ridlington home – having been severely injured in the wild.
David Carr, founder of the Wild Touch Wildlife Centre in the north-east Norfolk village, received a call on Tuesday to reports of a “pheasant sized bird of prey sitting in the mud under a trailer in a farm yard.”
Mr Carr, 31, said: “We expected it to be one of the more commonly seen species such as a kestrel, a sparrowhawk or a buzzard.
“Upon arrival we instead found a beautiful peregrine falcon, a rare species in Norfolk and a very unusual one to take in for rehabilitation in this area.”
Upon examination the female adult falcon seemed to have suffered a blow to the head resulting in a skull fracture, concussion and the internal structure of one eye becoming detached and filling with blood.
The bird was also quite underweight and had been fighting respiratory and throat infections.
Mr Carr reported: “She is now undergoing treatment and she’s improving every day.
“Her weight is coming back up and her infections are clearing up.
“Her eye will take a few weeks to heal, though.”
Mr Carr, who lives on site at the sanctuary, continued: “We’ll have to make a call later about if she can return to the wild, as it depends on her eye healing.
“Falcons need perfect sight to be able to hunt in the wild.
“We haven’t named her as she’s still very much wild, and when we interact with her we use a glove.”
Wild Touch has recently taken over the rehabilitation centre near Walcott and Bacton, formerly run by the Seal and Bird Rescue Trust.
Mr Carr, who has been working with wildlife for 16 years, added: “We took in over 500 wildlife casualties and exotic animals in 2017 and this figure rises every year, so with spring just around the corner we are expecting to be inundated with patients pretty soon.
“Because of this we urgently need more volunteers to help us care for the sick, injured and orphaned animals being treated at our hospital. Full training is given on site.”