You may remember that back in October we wrote about the progress of our new raptor hospital, which was looking good and nearing completion. At long last, it’s a pleasure to report that the hospital has finally been finished and furnished with all the necessary equipment to ensure that our future raptor patients have the best of care.
ust to recap briefly, Chief Fundraiser Maz was the prime mover in raising support for our hospital project and it was fantastic when Ipswich Pets at Home donated the money for the main body of the hospital. They were also kind enough to give us some squirrel toys for the new enclosure that Matt and the team have been building and some toys to go in the new ferret hut.
We also have to say a big thank you to a number of other people who have donated either equipment or time and muscle to the cause. It wasn’t just the exterior hospital building that needed replacing, it was also desperately in need of replacement furniture, so we are indebted to Freecycle for the donation of a fridge and kitchen units, Ideal Interiors on the Stonham Barns site for a sink, Just Learning in Ipswich for tables and B&Q for a worktop. All in all, the hospital now looks really smart both inside and out!
Also we are very grateful as always for the help of our band of volunteers who have all been stalwart in offering their services for the construction, decoration and fitting out of the new hospital. In particular we would like to say a big ‘cheers’ to Pete Ruddy and Paul Hunt who have put in a huge amount of hard work.
Finally, we also have to say thank you to our local vet Paul Cannon from Stowe Vets. Paul has looked after all the injured raptors that have come to us needing veterinary care for nearly four years. He was extremely kind in donating an opthalmoscope for checking an injured bird’s eyes. It is especially important for those that have had head injuries to check to see what is going on behind the eye. An opthalmoscope gives a clear picture of the ‘Fundus’ of the eye, which is the interior surface of the eye opposite the lens. This means that the falconer assessing an injured bird of prey can determine the health of the retina and the ‘vitreous humour’ (the clear gel that fills the space between the lens and the retina) and whether there has been any trauma caused by injury.
Our local vet Paul, from Stowe Vets, cut the ribbon and generously donated an opthalmoscope to the hospital equipment: meanwhile the local press lined up the guilty parties to have their photos taken!
Having had so much and such varied support, it seemed apposite to have a Grand Opening of the hospital once it was completed, hence on Friday 2nd December we asked the ladies from Pets at Home if they would attend and Paul Cannon if he would do the deed and cut the ribbon. Fortunately it was a lovely sunny day and General Manager Andy Hulme gave a welcome speech to some of the residents of the Stonham Barns site and some of the local press, who had gathered to celebrate the occasion. There were hot drinks, sandwiches and mince pies to be had after the Grand Opening, which was a great success.