A Merry Christmas to friends old and new.



We would like to wish all our friends and supporters of the sanctuary a very Happy Christmas and every good wish for the New Year.

It is your support that enables the sanctuary to keep running and each and every contribution is greatly appreciated.

Greetings also from Dakota, Autumn and our little therapy bird, Chatterbox.  They all have their work to do and carrying out their different tasks helps birds and humans alike.




Latest Casualties

Abandoned babies that have been hand reared and successfully released and injured ones that have been rehabilitated and released.

Alex the Budgie

I would like to tell you a story about a little Budgie that was bought for a young boy from a pet store. His parents assumed the Budgie was a young healthy bird, suitable as a companion for their son. They had only had him three days when he became ill. They took him to Susie, who is the Sanctuary Vet. Susie rang me to say the Budgie, who they had named Alex, was in fact an old bird and was unresponsive and actually moribund when she examined him.
Susie suggested they bring him to me to see if anything could be done but she did not think he would survive. When the family arrived and I took a look at Alex, I too felt he was near death. He was on his side and still unresponsive.
I had a heated hospital cage prepared for him and made him comfortable. After tending to other birds I returned to check on him, not expecting him to still be alive. He was and was also trying to move. The warmth had revived a little energy. I decided to give him a little intensive care formula and gently moved his little legs to aid circulation and see what, if any, response I could see. His right side was very weak and everything was suggesting he had suffered a stroke.
To my amazement Alex survived the night and was trying very hard to move. I was keeping him hydrated and nourished with the formula and gently encouraging movement in his legs.
I was spending every spare minute talking to him because Budgies are flock birds and do not like being on their own. Alex spent a great deal of time sleeping and everything was a real struggle for him.
After eight days Alex was able to move about. He could not perch and when not moving he laid flat. He was still very weak.
Gradually Alex grew stronger and made a big step forward when he started to perch in an upright normal position. I introduced another gentle Budgie named Bobbie and they are now inseparable.
One morning whilst I was cleaning out their cage, Alex had another stroke. It was not as major as his first one but he could not balance for a day. The following day he regained his grip and appeared to have suffered no other adverse affects.
Since then Alex has gone from strength to strength and now enjoys playing with toys and is such a cheerful little chap.
The chance of him suffering another stroke is quite high but each day is a bonus and with a good varied diet, plenty of stimulation and the company of the new love of his life, may he continue to thrive.
(Pic below) Alex on arrival, moribund, unresponsive
(Pic below) 6 weeks later, beak trimmed to normal shape and good weight gain.
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(Pic below) Happy chap!!
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A Christmas Message

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Wishing you all a happy Christmas and best wishes for the New Year from Myself & my team of helpers, Dakota, Nugget and Autumn.

Special thanks to everyone that has supported me during the year, Amparo, Niamh, Melanie, Louise, Nuala, John and Carol.

Many thanks to Jo & Stuart at Lough Bo Kennels for donating €100 instead of sending Christmas cards to their clients and to Kate for selling her bird photographs to raise €100.


Annual Fundraiser

I held a fundraiser on October 9th at the Teeling Centre in Collooney, which John very kindly let us use without charge as his contribution to the sanctuary.

We had a very special guest, Pauline McGlynn who you will know as ‘Mrs Doyle’ in Father Ted.  Pauline did a hen agility course with Nugget the hen fro the sanctuary.

Two friends worked with their dogs, Sheila did a fashion parade with her dog Kim and Brenda worked with her dogs, Cadeau & Pip, I worked with Dakota and Autumn.

I would like to say a special Thank you to Sheila and Brenda for the work they did during the weeks prior to the show.

A huge Thank you to Mary for spending countless hours baking her wonderful cakes and for providing everyone with refreshments on the day.

Special thanks to my son Derek & Catherine for their help on the day and a huge Thank you to Derek for sorting out a technical problem on the day and for providing the music for the acts.

A big Thank you to Darren and Suzie, the sanctuary vets for their contribution from their stall and their continued care of the birds.

Many thanks to Shane and Clare who helped behind the scenes looking after Dakota, Autumn and Nugget.

Thank you to Lonely and Ciaran for their great help on the day and last but not least Thank you to everyone that came along to support us, you raised an amazing €721.60.

See you all next year!!

Recent Arrivals

Recent arrivals that have been successfully rehabilitated and released.

Click on the image to enlarge.

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Fledging Dunnock that was attacked by a cat.


10 Housemartin fledgings that were brought in after their nests were destroyed by sparrows.


2 Flycatchers that came in at first a few hours old after their nest and other nestlings were attacked by a cat.


Mallard duck with a neck injury.


Starling fledgling that was attacked by a cat.


Juvenile crow that was hit by a car.


Starling juvenile that was attacked by a cat.

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Robin fledgling that was attacked by a cat.


Mistle thrush fledgling attacked by a cat.


 Nestling crow that fell or was kicked out of nest because he was very ill with respiratory problems.  He is still being hand reared.

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One happy chap!! : )


Blackbird fledgling that was attacked by a cat.


Very demanding!!


A hooded crow that spent the last 7 years confined in a small room in a house with no contact apart from a mouse for company, he now has a new lease of life.


Thrush with multiple bits from a cat.

Male Mallard Duck

A male Mallard duck was brought in after being found at the side of a riverbank with injuries to both eyes and the surrounding area.

The left eye is also very cloudy apart from the surrounding injured area.


The right eye a few days after treatment


Area around the left eye has now healed but it would seem there is little, if any, vision in this eye.


Very sore left eye on admission. This little chap is fully recovered and can go back courting the ladies

Condor – The Sparrow


Condor, the sparrow that was brought in as a nestling became the cheekiest bird I have ever known.  When I released him I felt he would be delighted to be free to fly in the wild.

Condor, however, had other ideas he returned every afternoon for his tea and roosted in a shed attached to an aviary.  That was his routine all through the winter until a few days ago he failed to return one afternoon.

I have not seen him since but there is a female sparrow regularly visiting the feeding station.

It may well be that she has a nest and has laid eggs because the males guard the nest.

I don’t see too many sparrows here so am really hoping that is what is happening with him.  I miss seeing him around because he is such a character.




Extensive injuries following a bizarre occurance.

She was dropped by a Hawk onto Katja’s car.

Noel kindly brought her in quickly after the incident but she had deep puncture wounds and no use of her legs.  I treated her for shock, stabilised the legs and treated her wounds.

After a couple of days she started to move her left leg and began eating with enthusiasm.

Gradually the movement returned in both legs and she was able to stretch out her toes and then was able to perch.

We had a few days of warm sunny weather so I put her cage in an aviary so that she could see and hear other birds in order to keep her spirits up.

After a few days I was able to put her in the aviary and she was flying and navigating with no problem at all.


She is now back in the wild.

Intruders resulting in sad losses

imageOn the 30th November, whilst I was out getting supplies, persons or a person got into the Sanctuary and opened the doors to the aviaries and opened both gates to Sir Edgars enclosure. Edgar is a Raven that was shot and has extensive damage to his side and wing leaving him unable to fly. Edgar has gone.

A little Skylark that I had rehabilitated and was over wintering has gone. Bonnie, the Jackdaw who has wing damage and has very limited flight, had got out but fortunately had gone into one of the sheds and had found hen’s eggs, so was still there when I returned.

The less able hens that are kept in the same area had taken the opportunity, seeing the open doors, of going into the aviary to get the seed on the ground. Unfortunately they also pecked at Princess, the little wood pigeon that has spent months recovering from a serious head injury. She has very limited flight and spends most of her time at ground level. Princess has been through so much already, including losing an eye and part of her face so it was very distressing to find her like this. Fortunately her injuries were superficial and after a course of antibiotic and lots of TLC she seems fine.

I cannot begin to tell you the pain this has caused me. Since Edgars arrival on 2nd July I have spent hundreds of hours with him. He was in a very bad way physically and was terrified of humans. Slowly but surely he gained confidence with me and was playing, chattering all day and clearly happy

Yes, Edgar should have been free but someone’s cruelty took away that choice. Now someone has taken away the happiness he had found.

I am heartbroken. I see him all the time, but he’s not there.

My aim, always, is to treat, rehabilitate and release birds back to the wild. If they are not released there is a very good reason. However, if they cannot cope or are stressed in any way in captivity they are put to sleep.

I have devoted my whole life to the Sanctuary and have not had a full day off in 5 years. I love every minute and am constantly thinking  of ways to stimulate and make their environment as close to their natural one as possible.

I have spent a lot of time and money making the Sanctuary safe from predators. Sadly my thoughts did not include the human kind.

I thank the Garda for their advice on security and systems are now in place, however this has meant using savings for another aviary which will be much needed come Spring.

Meeting the financial needs of the Sanctuary is always a struggle as I work entirely on my own so this is a big set back for me.

This incident has caused suffering in many ways but the birds suffering is unimaginable.

Sir Edgar will always be in my heart.

I would like to thank everyone for their messages and good wishes and a very special thank you to Jo and Stuart from Lough Bo boarding kennels and Geraldine Bailey for their very kind donations which I will put towards the new  aviary.