Sanctuary acts to save animal lives


Kirstie Dolphin

A REPTILE sanctuary has been battling to save lives after the worst storm in decades left them powerless.

The North Wales Raptor and Reptile Sanctuary, based in Ruthin, had no electricity from Wednesday, February 12 until Thursday evening.

A 6ft python died due to the lack of heat available and a barn owl called Sprite died after being blown down while in its aviary.

During the power cut time managers Gary Dickinson (pictured above) and Jane Drinkwater had to borrow and hire a generator from JT Williams in Ruthin, to keep some of their inhabitants warm.

The python, they called Old Girl, was thought to be more than 30 years old and Sprite up to 13 years old.

Jane said: “We had two generators as we’ve always been prepared but one broke so we had to borrow one and hire another generator so we had three.

“But it’s been hectic the animals are in the kitchen in pillow cases and boxes as they need to stay above 15 degrees, which is the lowest they can be without being detrimental to them.

“They’re ok as long as they’re warm.”
North Wales Raptor and Reptile Sanctuary rehomes, rehabilitates and repairs reptiles and raptors in the North West and North Wales.

The reptiles which need to stay indoors during the power electricty failure are snakes, lizards and tortoises which are in hibernation.
The self-funded sanctuary is also a respite centre for sick and injured birds of prey both wild and captive bred which can be in need of extensive veterinary help and rehoming.

“We’ve just had to get on with things, we’ve had no choice,” added Jane.
“We have been quite lucky there’s been no structural damage.”

Speaking on Monday when the power was back on Jane said: “Everyone is back in their rightful places now but we are still having to sort things out.”

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