Wild goose chase in Hampstead ends in rescue for injured bird

The injured goose in the Royal Free Hospital car park

The injured goose in the Royal Free Hospital car park - Credit: Archant

Feathers were ruffled in Hampstead when an injured goose hobbled into rush hour traffic in Pond Street this morning.

Leila Roy waited with the injured Goose for help to arrive

Leila Roy waited with the injured Goose for help to arrive - Credit: Archant

Traffic came to a standstill at about 9am as a gaggle of drivers and passersby stopped to take a gander at the bird.

Belsize ward councillor Leila Roy, who was getting off the C11 bus, flew to its rescue and tried to pick it up.

She then followed the bird as it led her on a goose chase into the Royal Free Hospital A&E ambulance bay before limping into the covered hospital car park where she finally cornered it in a bay.

Ms Roy, who keeps her own chickens in her Savernake Road home, immediately called for help from the RSPCA. “I could see this poor goose had an injured leg and could not put any weight on it. It also couldn’t fly as geese need to take a run up before taking off.

A Hampstead Heath ranger rescues the injured Goose

A Hampstead Heath ranger rescues the injured Goose - Credit: Archant


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“I called the RSPCA and waited and waited. They told me officers were on their way at 9am. But hours later they said nobody was coming to rescue the bird.

“They told me to release it onto the Heath, but with an injured leg it would have been dinner for another animal, like a Fox. It seemed too cruel.”

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Flying into a rage after two and a half hours of waiting, Conservative councillor Ms Roy sent tweets out about the goose’s plight.

She even considered taking the bird back to her own garden and putting it in one of the igloos she has for her chickens.

But she then had the idea of calling the Hampstead Heath rangers who rushed to the scene.

She said: “After two and a half hours, the Hampstead Heath Rangers came to the rescue. They took the goose until it can go to a rescue/rehabilitation centre.

“Trying to get the RSPCA to come and help turned in a wild goose chase, but luckily the Heath rangers flew to the rescue”

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