The last time Kotrmelína fought with a toothy one was in the main rescue station. city of Prague for wild animals for two months. “People found her on November 27, hiding in reeds near one of the Motol ponds. She was exhausted and apathetic,” recalls Zuzana Pokorná, head nurse of the station. The swan beauty was apparently attacked by a virus and no longer had the strength to fight. “She was surrendered, unable to feed herself or maintain her body temperature. She must have been under a heat lamp. We fed her by tube, gave her antibiotics and supportive drugs,” says Zuzana Pokorná.
They wrestled with death for her for a week before she recovered, began to eat on her own and gain strength. She was returned to the wild last Friday. Faithful Leonek was waiting for her at the pond. The stork happily flapped its wings. Then they set out side by side on the water, rubbing each other’s necks.
She accepted him without a wing
It was not the first test of swan love. Leonek also fought for his life. In 2022, someone broke his wing while nesting. Apparently, he got into a cross with a swan when he was defending his family with young ones. Despite the care of rescuers, he lost part of his wing. He has not been able to fly since. “When we returned him back to the female who was still leading the cubs, she didn’t want to accept him at first,” revealed Zuzana Pokorná. After a few weeks, however, the family was reunited. A year later, the swan pair nested again and raised more chicks.
Do not feed pastries
If people want to improve their swans, rescuers directly recommend granules for swans, which can be bought in pet stores, or chopped lettuce or sprinkled wheat and barley on the shore. But they definitely shouldn’t throw bread at them.
The ring “spoke”
The ornithological ring that Kotrmelína had on her leg revealed to the rescuers that they had already met in the past. In 2017, as a young cub, she became entangled in discarded fishing line at the Košík reservoirs in Prague 11. Even then, people helped her. They freed her from him and returned her to her parents.