Firefighting team rescue swan tangled in telephone lines

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A “huge” swan had to be rescued by five firefighters after crashing into telephone wires.

The animal was found tangled 15ft up in cables along Hamilton Drive in Edinburgh just after ten o’clock.

Firefighters struggled for 35 minutes to free the distressed animal, while concerned residents ushered their children inside.

The bird suffered a suspected broken wing after trying to free itself, and is now being cared for at the city’s Royal Dick School of Veterinary Studies.

The bird was stuck fast 15ft above an Edinburgh street
The bird was stuck fast 15ft above an Edinburgh street

 

A resident who witnessed the action said: “It was absolutely huge and all tangled up in the wires.

“I had given it some bread earlier on that day and hadn’t seen it for a while. A fire engine turned up and I suddenly realised it was hanging from the telephone wires.

“It was really distressing – I couldn’t watch. I told my kids to go inside because I didn’t want them to see what was happening.

“Swans are very territorial and it could have just been flying around when it got caught. It was horrible to see – it was just hanging there.”

Firefighters scaled a ladder to help untangle the terrified swan
Firefighters scaled a ladder to help untangle the terrified swan

 

A Scottish SPCA warden attended the scene, but had to call the Scottish Fire and Rescue service for help.

Animal rescue officer Steph Grant said: “The swan had become caught in telephone wires above an Edinburgh garden.

“It was around 15ft up and in a great deal of distress as one of the wires had wrapped around its wing.

“As it was wet last night the swan may have been confused and thought it was near a pond.

“I called the fire and rescue service for assistance and would like to thank them for all their help.

The swan was suspected to have suffered a broken wing
The swan was suspected to have suffered a broken wing

 

“They were fantastic throughout the rescue and were able to reach the swan using a ladder and bring it down to safety.

“The swan is now in the care of a local vets where x-rays will be carried out.”

Kevin Eatwell, a lecturer in the veterinary studies department at Edinburgh University said: “The swan, which is an adult male, is doing well.
Vets at Edinburgh University treated the bird and established that it had suffered no serious injuries
Vets at Edinburgh University treated the bird and established that it had suffered no serious injuries

 

“We have done an X-ray and luckily he hasn’t had any fractures or joint problems, just some bruising and muscle damage from all the thrashing around.

“We’ve given him some fluid and pain relief and he’s slowing building up his strength. He’s just getting to stand and hopefully in a few days, when we are satisfied he is back to full health, he will be released.”

 

The swan has been named Alexander after the Scottish-born scientist and inventor of the telephone, Alexander Graham Bell.

Alexander, as the swan has been named by Edinburgh University staff, is recovering and will be released into the wild
Alexander, as the swan has been named by Edinburgh University staff, is recovering and will be released into the wild

 

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