Late in 2019, Bude taxi driver, Trev Plant, started a Just Giving fundraising page for the local wildlife rescue charity, Born To Be Wild, the brainchild of Sue Gear.
Trev said: “My plan was to have a fundraising page to run during the month that I sponsored in Sue Gear’s wonderful Born To Be Wild calendar, in recognition of the absolutely awesome work she does rescuing wild animals. Trev thought that as well as sponsoring the calendar, he’d try to raise a little more, setting himself a target of £500. This target was exceeded with £520 raised in total.” The money has now been collected and passed on to Sue.
Sue, who works at Tamar Vets (who help treat the injured wildlife she cares for), started rescuing wild animals around nineteen years ago. At that time, any injured wildlife brought in to the veterinary practice was referred to the RSPCA. Quite often, the RSPCA recommended the animals be put to sleep as they felt they could not be saved. Sue grew increasingly very upset by this and decided to start taking the animals home with her to look after them and see if they could be nursed back to health. With her care, many survived.
Around this time she joined the British Divers Marine Life Rescue Group after being devastated to hear of a seal pup that had been stranded on the beach for three days before it died. She says that Bude now has a brilliant British Divers Team, including Ado, Michelle and Paul, among others. All do an amazing job but Paul now also often takes in sea birds, which has been a special godsend to Sue.
Meanwhile, Sue currently has quite a few animals in her care including a buzzard, an owl, seventeen hedgehogs, and a few pigeons. Sue’s love of animals extends to rehoming animals whose owners can no longer keep them. She has recently taken in 5 (possibly pregnant) guinea pigs, 2 finches and a budgie, which she will rehome through her various contacts. She is also caring for 3 ducks over the winter. Obviously, most wild animals need to be nursed back to health and released, but the domestic ones will be rehomed.
As you would expect, animal-loving Sue has her own animals, too: 2 pet dogs, 2 cats, 4 tortoises and 4 guinea pigs (all rescues) who are permanent additions to the household. Luckily, her husband Barry and sons, Jack and Billy, are a great support, doing many of the practical tasks that help keep Sue’s rescues going, fixing cages, and so on. Sue and Barry have also always paid for the electricity themselves, which soon adds up as Sue has heat lamps on all through the winter and incubators in the summer and winter. It is only recently that Sue has occasionally filled her petrol tank up with donation money, as in the busy months she can make 4 trips out a day driving in and around Bude carrying out rescues.
Sue was thrilled to hear of the £520 that Trev managed to raise for her rescues. She says:
“I’d love to revamp my original aviary which has grown a little tatty. It needs new felting, hinges, wood treatment, and so on. I’d also like somewhere for the ducks and water birds, like a duck house and a pond-like area. New cages for the spring birds are also on my list. Everything is so expensive, as we are in constant need of food and medication for the animals, so to have a fundraising boost like this from Trev is really brilliant. It is lovely to have extra funds to buy some essentials for the rescue birds, especially”.
All people who donated can feel assured that the money will all go towards making life a little easier for Sue’s rescues.