Flooded fields is proving fatal for ‘confused’ swans

SWANS are continuing to meet a grisly death as a result of spring flooding in Fermanagh, which is forcing the birds to fly into electrical wires.
Last January the Herald reported how there had been power cuts in the Kinmore, Innishrooske, Drumcrin, Cleenriss and Inishcollan areas of the county as a result of the swans flying into the wires. The waters may have been a little later rising this year, however the same problem is now happening again in the same area.
“Basically when the fields get flooded the poor birds get confused,” said Cllr Victor Warrington, who said he’d been contacted by several constituents in recent times regarding the issue. “Swans, which are majestic birds, apparently have a set flight path and when the fields flood this confuses them and they fly up into the wires.”
Last year both NIE and the USPCA told the Herald they were making efforts to help prevent the deaths of the birds. NIE, for example, said they had used “bird diverters”, which are small deflectors, on wires in other areas but at the time they were unable to get their machinery into the Fermanagh fields to attach them to the wires as the ground was too wet.
“However, this is a course of action we will be considering when the flood waters recede,” said an NIE spokesman.
Cllr Warrington said this has not happened.
“Unfortunately, like many things in life, nothing came of it,” he said.
In fact, Cllr Warrington said the issue of flooding in the area, which is also causing great disruption to local residents, had been happening for a long time with no action taken.
“This must be at least the fourth or fifth year, consecutively, this has happened,” he said. “Unfortunately it has happened again.”
Cllr Warrington said he knew of one man who had been stranded in his home this week, and needed to use a tractor to get out, while several more families had also been severely restricted by the waters this year.
“OK, the floods this time aren’t as bad as in previous years, but they’re still disruptive,” he said,
“At the end of the day we keep going back to DFI Road about it, we keep going back to the relevant authorities.”

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