Search

Lost pigeon lands on oil rig and hitches lift to Great Yarmouth on board cargo ship, before being taken to RSPCA East Winch Wildlife Centre, near King’s Lynn

PUBLISHED: 15:49 19 May 2017 | UPDATED: 15:49 19 May 2017

A crew member with the pigeon. Picture: RSPCA

A crew member with the pigeon. Picture: RSPCA

Archant

A racing pigeon who landed on an oil rig is being cared for by the RSPCA after hitching a ride on a supply ship.

The FS Kristiansand, which gave the bird a lift. Picture: RSPCA The FS Kristiansand, which gave the bird a lift. Picture: RSPCA

RSPCA Inspector Emily Astillberry met with the crew of the FS Kristiansand, when they docked in Great Yarmouth, to collect the exhausted bird, before taking him up to the RSPCA’s East Winch Wildlife Centre.

Insp Astillberry said: “This poorly pigeon has had quite the journey.

“We suspect he had become lost and as he ventured further out to sea, became more and more exhausted. The oil rig was probably a welcome pit-stop to rest up, but when the crew found him, he was in a bad way and unable to fly.”

The crew on the oil rig called through to shore to let the RSPCA know they had found the bird.

Before long, he was due to set sail on board the 3,500-tonne FS Kristiansand back to shore.

Insp Astillberry said: “I met the supply vessel while she was refuelling in Great Yarmouth and the team handed the bird over to me.

“He then had another journey, this time by van, to East Winch where he is being treated for weakness and dehydration, but he is otherwise okay so I hope he will be reunited with his owner soon.

“I’d like to say a big thank-you to the crew at the oil rig and on board the supply vessel who have looked after this suffering pigeon from the moment they found him. It’s really lovely to know that they cared enough to call us and bring him back to shore.”

The Royal Pigeon Racing Association says pigeons sometimes “come down for a rest” whilst racing or on training flights.

Anyone finding a lost bird is asked to see if it has a ring, which will usually have the owner’s details stamped on it. Some also have an address and postcode stamped onto some of the feathers on their inner wing.

It says birds should be fed on uncooked rice or lentils - not bread. Any without a ring are almost certainly feral or wild pigeons.

Before he goes home to his loft, the oil rig pigeon won’t go short of feathered friends during his stay at East Winch.

For staff at the wildlife hospital are also caring for around 200 orphaned ducklings which have become separated from their mothers at the moment - and expect the number to double as the birds’ breeding season gets into full-swing.

Comments have been disabled on this article.

Other News

Health leaders in Norfolk have teamed up to “take back control” of rates paid to locums after more than £60m was spent on filling recruitment gaps with temporary staff last year.

06:23

More eyes are needed to defend our coast from smugglers and help save lives at sea.

9 minutes ago

A support group that provides a helping hand for those diagnosed with cancer has celebrated its three-year anniversary.

08:09

A body found in woodland in Norfolk is believed to be that of a missing man from Hemblington, police say.

Most Read

Yesterday, 10:27

A pub in the heart of a seaside village has re-opened today (Thursday) following a total transformation that aims to woo back locals.

Read more
Mon, 13:08

Police are appealing for help to trace an elderly woman who is missing from Bradwell, near Great Yarnouth.

Read more
Norfolk Police

A man told a court how he was stabbed three times while acting as a peacemaker after a row over a damaged car in Great Yarmouth.

Read more
Norwich Crown Court
Tue, 15:26

A bizarre looking waxwork of singing and Neighbours star Jason Donovan in Great Yarmouth has been discussed by the Australian on ITV’s Loose Women this afternoon.

Read more
Peter
Mon, 12:18

Emergency services have been called out to reports of a person in the water by Great Yarmouth’s Haven Bridge.

Read more
Rescue Service

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 13°C

min temp: 7°C

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the Great
Yarmouth Mercury

e-edition today

Subscribe

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter