An injured male swan rescued from North Lakes returned to Lake Eden just in time for Christmas.
Dubbed `Siegfried’ by Wildlife Rescue Queensland carers in a nod to the ballet Swan Lake, he was suffering from an injured foot when he was rescued in October, leaving behind mother swan Odette and their flock of cygnets.
North Lakes residents had been following Siegfried’s progress since he was rescued by the RSPCA, with social media posts attracting thousands of comments speculating when he would be returned.
Wildlife Rescue Queensland president Byron Cann says Siegfried took longer to recover than expected, delaying his return to Lake Eden.
Siegfried’s carer was preparing for the swan’s transition to the wild, and testing him swimming in an enclosed dam at Burpengary when the swan made a daring bid for freedom.
“The carer was testing how he was swimming in the dam, when he took off,” Byron says.
“It’s never happened before because the enclosure is small and the swans can’t get a big run-up.
“He was like a homing pigeon and flew back to North Lakes.”
Byron says Wildlife Carers Queensland has continued to monitor Siegfried and is pleased with his progress.
Between September and December last year, Wildlife Carer’s Queensland rehabilitated and returned 18 black swans to the wild.
Byron says the volunteer-run organisation has rehabilitated more than 2500 animals in the past 12 months, ranging from swans, platypuses and bats to koalas and kangaroos.
“We’re all volunteers, we all have jobs, this is something we do because we love animals,” he says.
About 180 volunteers work for the organisation in roles such as rescue and fundraising, and as carers.
“Being a wildlife carer is an amazing experience, however it can also be extremely costly,” Byron says.
While Wildlife Carers Queensland is blessed with equipment following last year’s bushfires, Byron says carers are grateful to donors who help with the cost of consumables such as animal feed, specialist wildlife milk formula, tailored bird feed mixes, baby wipes and tissues.