Three orphaned fox cubs rescued from den20/04/2011 19:12:29
Mother had been dead for two days
April 2011: Volunteer rescuers have spent nearly four-and-a-half hours trying to rescue three fox cubs in East Sussex.
Rescuers could hear the cubs calling underground in a den at the side of the road. ‘It was a difficult and frustrating rescue,' said WRAS founder and rescuer Trevor Weeks, ‘The bank at the side of the road was steep and we kept slipping, the entrance tunnel also turned 90 degrees to where the cubs were, making it difficult to reach them.
Cubs were round a corner, out of reach
Alan Knight from International Animal Rescue was also on hand to give vital life-saving fluids to help save the cubs. Trevor was able to widen the hole wide enough for a rescuer to fit inside so she could reach round the bend to get to the cubs. She was able to reach the first but the others moved further down the tunnel, making it impossible to get to them, so volunteers had to back off.
The first cub was taken away for immediate care as volunteers worked hard to rescue the remaining cubs, which had begun to move closer to the entrance again.
‘The dead ones had clearly starved - they had not eaten anything for a while before dying,' said Trevor.
‘I think one cub thought I was mum returning'
To the rescuers surprise they noticed that there was a third cub, and after further contortions by Kathy she managed to scruff it. By now it was 9.30pm and pitch black.
‘This was an amazing rescue, which we really thought was going to end badly,' said Trevor. ‘The orphans were all dehydrated, underweight and starving hungry. There is no way they would have lasted another 24 hours, and they would have died a horrible slow death. The three cubs are now being well looked after and we are hopeful they will all make a full recovery and eventually be released back into the wild.'