Fears wildlife hospital will close

Fears wildlife hospital will close

The 79-year-old owner of a Co Antrim wildlife hospital has been helping to pay its costs from her own pension, due to a lack of funding, but now fears it will be forced to close after nearly 40 years.

Talnotry Avian Care Trust, known as TACT, has cared for thousands of birds and animals - from foxes and rabbits to swans and owls, and many more - during its four decades in Crumlin.The centre aims to rehabilitate its patients and ultimately return them to the wild whenever possible, but it also ensures that no animal or bird in its care is put down if it cannot be released.It receives no government funding and relies entirely on donations.But, at almost 80, owner Patricia Nevins is due to retire from her work with the centre.The worry is that we're really going to need £1,000 a week to keep TACT running.Patricia Nevins, TACTShe has serious concerns about TACT's future, what will happen to the animals currently being treated there - and all those that will need medical help in the years to come."My worry is the finance," she told UTV."Up until now, when it comes to pay day, I would check with the bank if we have enough money to pay and I would put in out of my own pension what is needed to make sure everyone gets paid."As well as helping sick or injured birds and animals, TACT also works to educate the public and get them involved in caring for wildlife - particularly young people and those with special needs.It also promotes ornithological research, conducts breeding programmes for endangered species, and works to prevent cruelty and promote wildlife protection.Those who work hard to return the waifs and strays of the wildlife world to good health hope that more awareness of their efforts will help preserve the centre for many more years to come.

© UTV

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