An East Lothian buddy managed to raise a Canadian goose after being injured after being attacked by a cat.
Declan Longmuir, 16, and Keiron Rattray, 19, discovered the gosling they named Pip was injured while walking in Musselburgh in May this year.
The couple could not provide the injured young animal with the SSPCA because the animal was classified as an alien bird and could not be taken in.
But Keiron, who used to volunteer with the SSPCA, has always had a soft spot for animals in need and so the two of them agreed to take care of the bird and mother it back to health.
And at the beginning of this week, after six months of care, the friends released Pip back into the wild on the Esk River, where she has probably settled in and made some friends.
Commenting on her adventure with Pip, Declan said: “We have had Pip since she was a cub. She was caught by a cat at a young age and could not walk properly.
“We found that poor goose was injured on May 14th when my friend Keiron and I were out for a walk.
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“We called everywhere we could to take them and raise them. But since she is a Canadian goose, the SSPCA refused to accept her because she is an alien bird that they do not interact with.
“So we took on the tough job of being her mother and raising her ourselves. Keiron used to volunteer for the SSPCA and hated seeing any animal in danger, so me and Kieron took on the responsibility of being their new mom.
“Taking care of Pip was a bit of a challenge as she was so messy and needed constant attention.
“The biggest challenge was keeping Pip alive, making sure she was locked away every night so the foxes wouldn’t get her, and feeding her twice a day.
“After a long six months we were finally able to release her to the Esk River, where she belongs.
“We sent a message to East Lothian Animal Rescue and they just gave us some advice on how to release her and told us it wouldn’t be easy as she really depends on us.
Hopefully this article can make people aware that she was a hand-reared goose and is very used to people and prone to following people. So if she follows you from the river please lead her back or message Keiron Rattray or me and we will lead her back.
“It has a yellow label, so it can be identified. And when you pass her, please send us a photo. “