A swan has been rescued in remarkable circumstances after getting trapped beneath a waterfall in Holywell.
Officers from the RSPCA were alerted after the swan was spotted stuck beneath the fast-flowing waterfall at the Swan – now at Stapeley Grange RSPCA in the North Wales town.
Video footage shows the plight of the swan and the force of the towering waterfall. Rescuers from the RSPCA raced to the scene – as did Flintshire County Council rangers at the park, in the hope of coming to the aid of the trapped bird.
RSPCA inspector Mike Pugh and the rangers hatched a plan to catch the swan – involving the rangers guiding the swan down the waterfall into a large tunnel, where inspector Pugh was waiting to collect the bird and check him over.
However, the swan ended up stopping within reach at the bottom of the waterfall – meaning he could be collected by rescuers and handed straight over to the RSPCA. The rescue took place last Monday (1 February).
The swan requires a period of rehabilitation and care, and also has an eye injury – so has been transferred to the Stapeley Grange Wildlife Centre in Nantwich for urgent care and treatment.
RSPCA Cymru is now aiming to return the swan to the site as soon as possible, as his mate is waiting for him at the park.
Inspector Mike Pugh said: “This swan was in such a precarious position – trapped in the middle of the waterfall.
“We understand he’d been there since Saturday, and his mate was waiting for him at the top.
“It was so important we got the swan out – so we hatched a plan with the rangers to guide the swan down the waterfall and through a tunnel, where I was waiting to safely grab him and check him over.
“Like all good plans – it took a slightly different direction, and the swan went to the bottom of the waterfall where the park rangers could safely reach him instead. We’re so grateful for their help.
“I am desperate to reunite this swan with his mate – but his condition meant he had to be transferred to specialist wildlife facilities for care, rehabilitation and treatment for an eye injury. We’re aiming to get him back to the Greenfield Valley Park as soon as possible.”
Gwladys Harrison, Chair of Greenfield Valley Trust, said: “The Board of Trustees are very grateful to the RSPCA and valley staff for their help with retrieving the swan and bringing him to safety.
“We are looking forward to welcoming the swan back to Greenfield Valley once he is fit and well. Thank you to the RSPCA for their expert skills on Monday and the specialist care they are providing for the swan”
More information about the RSPCA’s work with wildlife is available online. Should you wish to support the RSPCA’s work, you can donate online.
Thanks to Chris O’Brien