Whooper swan back in the wild

Whooper swan, YKA, swimming off into the Ouse Washes CREDIT Emma Brand/WWT;

Whooper swan, YKA, swimming off into the Ouse Washes CREDIT Emma Brand/WWT; - Credit: Archant

A female whooper swan found near a Norfolk reserve has been released back into the wild.

Whooper swan, YKA, stretching her wings CREDIT Emma Brand/WWT.

Whooper swan, YKA, stretching her wings CREDIT Emma Brand/WWT. - Credit: Archant

The swan, which had no obvious injuries but would not take off and fly, was taken to the RSPCA East Winch wildlife centre, near King's Lynn, for a health inspection.

It was found near Welney wetland centre by marketing officer, Emma Brand, who said: 'As I made my way back to the centre, I could see a swan in the road.

'I got out of the car to see if the swan would fly off, in case it had mistaken the shiny road for water and landed by mistake. But despite making a normal 'take-off run', it didn't get into the air.'

She called a warden at the centre, Louise Clewley, and, together, they were able to safely catch the swan.

The bird spent the Christmas period with the RSPCA, where she received a full health check and an x-ray. She had leg rings fitted and was returned to the reserve, near Downham Market, to be released back into the wild at a quiet spot on the Ouse Washes.

Thousands of swans winter on the wetlands each year.

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Ms Clewley said: 'The bright orange ring encoded with YKA is unique to this bird and means that we may be able to spot her again in the future.'

More information can be found at wwt.org.uk/welney

Have you rescued an animal or bird recently? Email david.bale2@archant.co.uk