Charity’s care of creatures great and small

Marvel, the pine martin, was was hand reared by assistant manager, Jonny Appleyard, before being weaned onto solid foods.
Marvel, the pine martin, was was hand reared by assistant manager, Jonny Appleyard, before being weaned onto solid foods.

The Scottish SPCA took in for a record number of wildlife casualties last year.

Scotland’s animal welfare charity released 4,364 wild animals fit and healthy in 2016, a huge leap from the 1881 released in 2010.

Colin Seddon, manager of the Scottish SPCA’s National Wildlife Rescue Centre in Fishcross spoke at the launch of the charity’s annual Wildlife Week (July 3-9).

He said: “Last year we were able to take in more animals than ever before. The significant rise is partly due to our relocation in 2012 to our National Wildlife Rescue Centre in Fishcross from our former site in Dunfermline, which was being stretched to cope with the volume and diversity of animals we were rescuing.

“The £3.5 million development, which was funded entirely by donations, allows us to care for more sick, injured and orphaned wild animals than ever before.”

The centre in Clackmannanshire boasts veterinary facilities, seal pools, aviaries, wild mammal enclosures, a stable block for deer casualties and can care for up to 1000 oiled birds at a time.

Colin added: “There is also an increased awareness among the Scottish public about how we can help sick, injured and orphaned wildlife, resulting in more people calling our helpline when they come across a distressed wild animal, and we’ve invested significantly in our frontline staff so we now have even more officers to respond to call-outs.”

Anyone who discovers an injured or distressed animal should call the Scottish SPCA Animal Helpline on 03000 999 999.

Marvel the pine marten

The Scottish SPCA was alerted at the beginning of April to a four week old orphaned pine marten.

The pine marten, named Marvel, is at the National Wildlife Rescue Centre.

Colin said: “Marvel was hand reared by our assistant manager, Jonny Appleyard, before weaning him on to solid foods.

“Pine martens are very rare and protected by law. They are currently being introduced back into parts of the UK where they were once persecuted to extinction.

“Once Marvel is fully independent and behaving naturally he will be released at a specially chosen release site with the land owner’s permission.”