Everything has it's beauty, but not everyone sees it. - Confucius
Sometimes the picture doesn't have to be perfect; it's the captured moment that counts. - me
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Saturday, 22 December 2012


I think a lot of people think of Tiggywinkles as a hedgehog rescue place; and, yes,  they are. But they are so much more than that. They are a Wildlife Hospital. They care for sick and injured hedgehogs, badgers, foxes, deer, wild birds, reptiles and amphibians.
They are open for wildlife casualties, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. That costs a lot of money, they are a registered charity, and also rely on the generosity of the public.

Click here for a link to their website.

I paid a visit on Friday, it's near Aylesbury, and took some food, and bits and pieces with me, and then had a look round the Visitor Centre.

A lot of animals are still undergoing treatment, and obviously these can't be seen.
But a lot can.

A large pond,

where various ducks, geese, gulls and Herons that have been injured or sick at some time, now recuperate.

Even healthy wild birds drop in from time to time.

In one of the large aviaries, two female Ravens live quite happily together.

Neither could survive in the wild, but they seem to love the company of visitors. I was told to talk to them when I saw them. I did, and they seemed content to listen, and observe this strange thing looking at them. I'm told they even mimic some of the sounds they hear. One of them being the sound of Red Kites.

There are three very large aviaries for these magnificent birds that have at some time been injured, or become sick.

One large aviary is for the birds that will never be able to be released into the wild, for various reasons.
A second is for birds that are gradually recuperating, able to fly, but still not 100% fit.
And the third is for the birds that will very soon be able to fly free again.

One big enclosure houses injured Badgers. Being nocturnal animals, I didn't manage to see these, but another, separate, large enclosure houses some Foxes.

Not often you can get to see these beauties up close,

and going about their daily lives.

Areas for Deer, (some I could see, and some I couldn't), and other areas with various wild birds, hedgehogs, and goodness knows what else.

The thing to remember is, it is not a zoo. All the animals here are being cared for and will eventually, wherever possible, be released back into the wild. Some, who's injuries are too severe to enable them to be able to survive in the wild, will stay here, and receive the care, attention and love they need, to live out the rest of their lives.

Every visit will be different. Some animals will have left to go back to doing what they should; be free and wild.
And sadly, some new animals will be here. Sick and injured animals. But they will be lucky in a way, because they will be getting the best care available to them.

And lots of love.


If you live nearby, pay Tiggywinkles a visit. If you live far away, then make a day of it.


  1. A great place...Looks a really good and worthwhile organisation.

  2. Ha! I hadn't seen this post when I put my comment on your other blog :-) it really is a wonderful place. So good to see how well cared for the creatures are. That little Munjac was getting around well on three legs! Love the Heron of course :-)

    We had a marvellous local man who did the same thing in his own home and garden just as Les Stocker once did years ago. I remember taking a little House Sparrow (or it might have been a Starling, I can't remember now) and there was a beautiful Barn Owl sat on the curtain rail in his front room! Sadly our man passed away far too soon but there is still a small local nature reserve dedicated to and originally started by him.

  3. Thanks Adrian. I spent a great couple of hours there. The work they do is amazing. Restores a bit of faith in humans; well, some of them.

    Thanks Jan. Certainly worth more than one visit. I was told spring time, they can have quite a few fledglings brought in. During the last lot of flooding lots of Red Kites were getting waterlogged, and unable to fly. All were looked after, and safely released.

  4. Never been there for a visit Keith, It looks like a wonderful place and the caring work they do for injured and distressed wildlife is just phenomenal...[;o)

  5. First time I've been Trevor. A spur of the moment decision. Grabbed some stuff, and off I went. lol
    Certainly go again.

  6. Lots of time, care and money needed to keep an enterprise that size going Keith.

  7. a wonderful rescue and rehab center! thanks for sharing it with us.

  8. It's really grown over the years John.

    Thanks Theresa. It really is a lovely place, with such dedicated staff.

  9. Once my husband found a hurt bird in our garden. It looked quite unusual, with its long green legs and obviously it was in shock. We called a local bird rescue station and they told us they couldn't come right away but gave us instructions. When they finally arrived, I was so glad there is actually someone who cares! Like at the Wildlife hospital you write about.

  10. Great post Keith, sometimes when I have to get up early for work or birding, on Channel 5 very early in the morning they have a programme called Animal Rescue and features the work done by the staff at the centre. Even though the programmes are old, what comes across is the passion and compassion of all the staff working there. From hand feeding un-fledged Robins,Wrens,etc to even those Red Kites. One featured a young deer that was brought in, they worked hard to save it and then released it behind this womens property. The young deer and women (who's house it was released behind) had a very real bond, sadly some numpty with his dog off lead attacked the young deer and it died, the emotions from the women were so raw it even made a toughie like me cry. Great work and often under appreciated.

  11. Thanks very much for showing us the positive work that Tiggywinkles does.

  12. HI Keith...This is the only way animals should be kept in confinement! Wonderful that there are places sand people that will do this with great concern!!
    Looks like a nice place...,and a way to see wildlife critters : )!
    You take care.. I know you are a bit of a Ba-humbug!!
    Have yourself a bit of cheer!!
    Hugs my friend

  13. Thanks Petra. These people do a fantastic job. I'm glad there are people like this around the world.

    Thanks Doug. They certainly are a dedicated bunch of people. Not a job I could do though. I'd be constantly upset at the animals plight.

    Bob, you're most welcome. They are real Saints.

  14. Thanks Grace. Yea, it was a wonderful place to see, and like you say, good to know that some people really care to do this.
    Got a bit of cheer on the go right now. Cheers! Enjoy your Christmas.

  15. Hi Keith, we have many of these type of Wild Animal rescue and care centers in Canada, some are very large and some are smaller. Every province in Canada has them.

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you my friend. Take care and be Happy.

  16. There are some really GREAT charities in the world I would consider this one..
    I volunteered in a similar type facility for 2 yrs! It has since closed down, which was unfortunate, but the fellow kept it going as long as he could which was nearly 10 yrs. Have a great Christmas Keith!!

  17. A great place in the village of Haddenham Keith, where my family are from and one of cousins used to volunteer at. They do a sterling job! And definitely not just for Hedgehogs.
    Follow me at HEDGELAND TALES

  18. Thanks Horst. These places do a fantastic job for our wildlife don't they.
    Have a good Christmas.

    Thank you Sondra. It's good that some people care enough to devote some time like this to our wildlife on this planet.
    Enjoy your Christmas too.

    Thanks John. Yes, a brilliant place and a fantastic job they do.
    Have a great Christmas.

  19. A great post Keith, they do a great job there for so many species, many just associate them with Hedgehogs

  20. Thanks Gary. They are incredible with the work they do for wildlife. :-)

  21. It's great to read such heart-warming stuff particularly at this time of the year. I am one of those who thought hedgehogs were the only rescuees.... just shows!!

    Have a good Christmas, Keith....

  22. Thanks Tricia. Have a great Christmas too.

  23. A bit late seeing this but what a wonderful place..
    I hope they get all the funding they need to keep it going for years to come.

  24. Hi there - strange to think that there are now enough Red Kites about for them to turn up in a place like this!

    Hope you are not underwater.

    Have a happy Christmas - Stewart M - Melbourne

  25. Thanks Andrew, I do too.

    Strange; and sad Stewart.
    Keeping fairly dry here, but my local lake is flooded. Hope you enjoyed Christmas.