Watch Out For Wildlife
The autumn wildlife migration is here and Chichester Harbour is now home to thousands of migrating birds. The sheltered estuary with its tidal reaches, mudflats, reed beds, and woodland habitats is a vital resource for resident and over-wintering wildlife. In the next few weeks look out for increasing numbers of teal, brent geese, knot, dunlin, grey plover, redshanks, and godwits.
The local wildlife rehabilitation centre is Brent Lodge Wildlife Hospital, a charity based in Sidlesham. They treat, rehabilitate and responsibly release injured wildlife casualties and orphans and care for up to 3,500 wildlife patients annually - many are from in and around the local harbour area.
Sadly, every year they receive swans and numerous water bird species with injuries caused by discarded fishing lines and hooks, children’s crab nets, and plastics, or have been oiled or poisoned by spills and pollution. Last year the charity cared for 22 species of mammals and 101 species of wild birds – 10 species are on the UK Red List of conservation concern.
Their patients are admitted direct from members of the public, from the RSPCA or from local vets who have pre-assessed the patient as needing specialist wildlife care facilities. If you find an injured wild bird or animal in the harbour area please call Brent Lodge for advice on what to do on 01243 641 672.
The charity receives no government funding and is dependent on supporters, donations, and its charity shops to fund running costs. We will hear more from Brent Lodge in future articles on wildlife patient stories and how the boating community can do its bit to help protect and respect the UK’s wildlife.
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