Staying busy through orphan season is an understatement. I can't complain about any of it. I love boxes, every one I open that someone brings me has an animal in it that needs my help. It is better than Christmas morning,definitely more boxes for me to open. I am sure fawns will be coming in any day now. That will make the sleep deprivation that I'm having with the coons seem like nothing.
This morning I had a great surprise with one of the coons. As I was feeding them before school, I realized that one of them has an eye that is starting to open. When you have spent as much time as I have with them over the last couple of weeks, you get excited on small milestones like that. I cant wait to get them outside, be able to teach them how to find crawfish in their pool, open eggs, etc.... They have lots of things to learn to give them an edge after release into the wild.
I had a meeting at school with Carla Decker and almost 40 students from MCS. Carla is one of the directors of Workforce Solutions. Workforce Solutions runs a great program for students 14-24. They are going to get 170 kids from Schoharie County. working this summer. If you know of any local businesses that are looking to give a chance to a kid to develop some positive work experience it is a great program. I can't believe that more businesses don't participate. Our resident dog groomer Jennifer even takes a kid and teaches them what it takes to run a dog grooming shop here at our facility. I always take several HS students every summer for 8 weeks. Workforce pays them and I teach them how to be reliable and hard working. I have a lot of plans for the summer, a lot of projects that really need to get done.
The phone continues to ring off the hook, I want to remind everyone to keep calling. ALL wildlife rehabbers are running around this time of year and are tough to get ahold of. (See a previous blog on "Emergencies")
I received a call tonight, which I promptly returned, about 5 orphaned baby coons. Remember: animals showing aggression this time of year may just be protecting their young. The guy told me that the 'coons had been transferred to another rehabber but didn't know that persons name. Then he said they had been released, then they were dead.... I don't believe him.
It is very foolish to raise orphaned WILD animals as pets. They are not pets, can have diseases and will often die unless properly cared for.
I also had a baby Morning Dove and an adult male Pileated Woodpecker come in tonight that was hit by a car.
Find the best qualified person closest to you, don't be afraid to ask them if they have experience with the species of animals you have rescued. A quick way to do this is go to the NY Wildlife Rehabilitation Council's website. On the toolbar, there is a link to finding a LICENSED wildlife rehabber near you. Look and see what their specialties are before calling. Remember, many rehabbers have a specialty or may only have the facilities to handle certain animals.
We are volunteers (we do this for no pay and spend thousands of dollars to buy what we need) and we can NOT drive to everyone's house to pick up what you have found. You will most likely need to drive it to us or meet us somewhere and all wildlife rehabbers gladly except donations.
I have a group of Headstart students coming tomorrow morning so I tried to get lawns mowed and get everything ready after school.
The vet came today and gelded the llama that I picked up this past Friday. He can go out tomorrow with the sheep.
Thursday I am going to the Bronx Zoo with my oldest daughter and my wife's MCS 7th grade students. I am really looking forward to it, it is a great zoo and I love zoos. Zoos are vital to the education of our future generations of conservationists and preservation of our world's most valuable resource--our animals.
Time to sign off, it is 12:30 am and the alarm clock (or coons) will have me up by 5:30 ... if I am lucky.