We love an animal story here at Visit Cleveleys so we were pleased to be told about a seagull rescue which happened last week.
Spike, the very lucky seagull, is now back on the beach after his brush with danger a few weeks ago, thanks to Mel, the good samaritan who saved him.
Read on to the bottom of this article to find out exactly how Spike got impaled and then saved, but the story comes to a lovely conclusion with his release.
This week started with a few Facebook messages about when he’d be set free – he was getting fractious at being kept captive and was healed and ready to go after his ordeal.
However, the weather was far too windy, so his release was delayed until the end of the week. We got a phone call to say Friday 6 March at 3pm was the day and time, so off we went for the photocall and this lovely bit of video.
Unfortunately Mel wasn’t able to be there for the big moment, which was a shame. But you can see that Spike took easily to the skies, to be met by a handful of birds who seemed to know him.
You can see in the clip that four or five birds fly to join Spike and then after the video clip stops they all flew together to the edge of the sea to float on the water.
A lovely end to what have could been a tragedy for that particular bird, all thanks to one kind man and the work of Easterleigh. If it wasn’t for Easterleigh, hundreds of injured, neglected and abandoned animals would go through more unnecessary suffering each year, so if you can help in any way at all please do so.
Where the Story Started (published 18.2.15)
On a Wednesday morning in early February there was a kerfuffle on Victoria Road West when a seagull managed to impale itself on the spike at the top of the Rotary clock near Wilkinson’s at Nutter Road.
It wasn’t quite as bad as that sounds, but somehow or other the bird had managed to get the spike through its wing between the tendon and the bone, and it was hanging on with what was like a piece of elastic as it kept slippping off the top.
As you can imagine, there was a commotion with its seagull friends gathering and circling and people watching – many of whom were getting quite upset at the sight (as I would have been) – and there was quite a crowd gathering.
Mel Jones from Fleetwood was one of the crowd, and with a couple of other people took action and started trying to find some ladders from one of the businesses with which to reach the bird. Other people tried to phone the RSPCA, and council but nothing that the crowd did seemed to be providing a solution to the poor birds distress.
Mel decided to go home and fetch his own ladders, saying “I know a lot of people aren’t keen on seagulls and I wouldn’t say I’m especially their biggest fan, but I couldn’t just walk off knowing that I’d left it there without trying to help.”
Back on Victoria Road with his ladders, a couple of nearby shop owners steadied them so that he didn’t have an accident himself, and he went up them on his rescue mission, adding “I wouldn’t mind but I don’t even like heights, so I daren’t look down!”
Mel came back well prepared with and a box to put it in and a pair of thick gloves which is a good job as the gull immediately bit him (and they do have quite a sharp bite). After a bit of a struggle where he had to pull at the wing he jiggled it over the spike, and safe in it’s box took instruction on what to do next.
A visit to the vets at the Norbreck revealed that the bird just needed some rest and recuperation, and he was asked to take it to Easterleigh Animal Sanctuary where it could be watched for a week to make sure that infection doesn’t set in. So Mel’s afternoon ended with a round trip to south shore where the bird is lodging until it is fit enough to be returned back to friends and family at Cleveleys.
We don’t know that anything like this has happened before, but Wyre Council will be changing the finial on the top of the clock to stop it from happening again.
Easterleigh will be letting us know when the bird is well enough to be released with a view to recording the happy moment, helped by Mel Jones his guardian angel. In fact we named Mel an Animal Hero for his endeavours, at which point he told me that the bird had been named Spike!
As you know, Easterleigh have opened a shop in Cleveleys. Whatever your view about charity shops in general, it’s vital for raising money to help abandoned, neglected and mistreated animals from the Fylde Coast.
They are also in desperate need of reliable volunteers to work there. If you are looking for something to do and want to help this important animal charity then please pop in the shop to find out more. You’ll also make friends and pass your time too, so it’s good all round.
Spike the seagull back in Cleveleys to be released
Sam from the Easterleigh shop with the seagull, about to be released
The offending clock in Cleveleys where he’d been impaled