Fundraising appeal to keep 1,200 animals fed
By Martin Paul - Senior Reporter
AN animal rescue and conservation centre has launched a winter appeal after bad weather during the summer holidays badly affected income.
Wetheriggs Animal Centre, near Greta Bridge, relies on cash earned from visitors during the summer to tide it through the winter months, but heavy rain during August meant fewer people visited.
Now a fundraising drive has been launched to ensure its more than 1,200 animals are fed and kept warm this winter.
Terry Bowes, from the centre, said: “For the first week of the school holidays we were well ahead of the game, but the last five weeks were abysmal. We have worked out it costs about £2,300 a week to keep the rescue centre going.
“£20 will buy a large bale of hay, £35 will feed a parrot for the winter, £15 will feed a guinea pig for the winter, and Heidi the fox and our meerkat family will cost £200 to feed and keep warm during winter.”
Adding to the drain on finances was an increase in numbers of animals that had been brought into the centre over the past few months, he said.
Mr Bowes added: “This year twice as many local wild animals have been brought in for rehabilitation, including more than 70 hedgehogs.”
Some of the more expensive items that have to be kept in stock include live food like meal worms and insects to keep the reptile collection alive.
Vitamins and minerals that are added to the feed also have to be paid for.
People can help by sponsoring an animal at the centre or by attending an autumn open day on Saturday, November 2, where people can meet Heidi the fox, the meerkats, reptiles and many more exotic animals.
Animal handling and creative crafts will also take place on the day.
Mr Bowes paid tribute to the centre’s many volunteers, particularly those with special needs and learning disabilities, who help out on a regular basis.
The help the centre visit wetheriggsanimalrescue.co.
uk or search for Wetheriggs on Facebook.