Center for Wildlife Monthly E-newsletter

A Delicate Dance
Last month we wrote about the 3 feet of snow we received in a week.  Late February and early March we experienced 65 degree weather and much of the snow has melted.  Next week we can expect a foot of snow.  Although we are all used to and appreciate "that crazy New England weather!", the snow/thaw dance historically occurred in April.  

As wildlife (and humans!) frantically try to adapt to these shifting conditions, we know firsthand that wild animals are also contending with road mortality, pesticides, and domestic cats.  Read on to learn what Center for Wildlife is doing to prepare for another unusual and heavy patient volume, along with what you can do at home to keep wildlife safe!
Make Way for Ducklings 
We hope you can join us for our popular annual event, to be held on Sunday, March 12 from 11-1pm at the gorgeous Wentworth Greenhouses at 141 Rollins Rd in Rollinsford, NH.

This year's theme is "Wild Neighbors." Programming, hands-on activities, nature crafts, and more will focus on the challenges our wild parents and their young may face, and how we can help and be kind and conscientious neighbors, mutually benefiting each other. 

This year's event will include:
  • Live animal ambassador presentations: "Raptors to Rodents; Neighborhood Watch!" 11:30-11:50 and "Bats to Barred Owls; The Benefits of Neighbors of the Night" at 12:20-12:40pm
  • Raffles
  • Kids activities and takeaway crafts
  • Food

There is a $5.00 per person admission and kids under 10 are FREE!  Click here to read the great press coverage of this event. 

Nesting Season- Spotlight on Squirrels

And so it has begun! A full WEEK earlier than last year, and 3 weeks earlier than the earliest (and outlying) babies of the season in 2007, we admitted our first baby orphaned squirrels of the season last night. With global climate change, extreme weather patterns, and pressures from human encroachment on habitat, we are seeing drastic changes in mating, nesting, and migration patterns.

These babies are called "pinkies" as they do not yet have their fur. Squirrels are born naked and blind. Want to help babies like this? Follow these tips:
  • The best first step for babies such as these is to TRY AND REUNITE THEM WITH MOM! Placing the babies in a cardboard box next to the tree they were found under that the parent can get to and observing them from a distance, will give the worried mom a chance to find them and take them to one of her other nests she has built. 
  • If they cannot be reunited with mom or if mom is deceased, they need to be brought to a licensed rehabilitator AS SOON AS POSSIBLE. Preferably within 12-24 hours.
  • DO NOT attempt to feed the babies ANYTHING, especially milk. They can aspirate and die as well as develop serious digestive issues if fed the wrong thing.
  • Keeping them in a warm, quiet, well ventilated covered box until you can get them to a rehabilitator is best. Please DO NOT snuggle them or allow children to hold them. They are wild animals, it would be the equivalent of a tiger trying to "snuggle" you. 
  • Steward your habitat well! Do not cut trees during nesting season, don't trap and relocate as this can lead to starvation and death.

If you have any questions, please call out wildlife hotline at 207-361-1400. Thank you! 

Thank You Avian Haven!

Last month Tom, Katie, and Sonja headed up to Avian Haven and the Acadia Wildlife Foundation to tour their facilities, strengthen partnerships among other colleagues doing this unique work, and continue learning about techniques and best practices that other facilities may be using.  We were honored and surprised by Avian Haven's offer of their lead testing machine!!!  They were able to procure a new one, and offered to give us their functioning older one.  This has been on our strategic plan for a couple of years, and will go far for our ability to test for lead in house, getting immediate and accurate results.  This means we can offer patients swift treatment, and begin contributing to the baseline data of lead in wildlife and the environment being collected by fellow wildlife rehabilitators and biologists. Mark and Diane also showered us with trout, paper towels, and other supplies.

Thank you as well to Anne Rivers of Acadia Wildlife Foundation for spending so much time with us and opening up your facility.   We are so lucky to have such amazing colleagues in this field, addressing the regional need for wildlife care and stewardship.   

New and Improved Hotline!

Center for Wildlife's call volume has increased from 50-60 calls per day to 80-90 during our peak season in just the last 5 years.  Not only do we take calls from all over New England for animal emergencies, we accept dozens of inquiries daily on fundraising, education programming, an volunteer and internship opportunities.  In addition to this high call volume, our outdated system was dropping calls which made handling animal emergencies a real challenge to say the least.  

Last spring at our Call of the Wild fundraiser, 23 donors came together to raise funds toward the cost of technology upgrades, including installation of a new and appropriate phone system for our high call volume.  We are proud to report the system was installed yesterday!  In addition to having enough lines and actual voicemail for staff, the system will free up clinic staff and apprentice time to focus on patients and emergencies.  Check out the new system next time you give us a call! 
Spring Internships

Are you or someone you know interested in learning more about our native wildlife, or a career in wildlife rehabilitation, conservation, or ecology/biology?? Or are you looking for hands on experience in a fast paced wildlife medical clinic, and helping injured and orphaned wildlife return to the wild? The Spring Wildlife Care Internship may be just for you!

There are just a few part time and full time positions open, and typical interns are not just in school but have also recently graduated or are considering a career change. Spring sees lots of babies of over a hundred different species and is a great time to join our team. Just a week left to apply, click here to learn more or apply today!
Upcoming Events

Saturday, March 18th
Wildlife Shenanigans with Mount A
Mount Agamenticus Learning Lodge

Join Center for Wildlife educators and live animal ambassadors for a discussion about what our local wildlife is doing this time of year, including migrating, breeding, and nesting! Following the program, learn to identify the sounds and signs of our local wildlife's springtime shenanigans on a hike around Mt. A!

Open to all ages; moderate hike.

Friday, March 31st
Owl Prowl Series at Center for Wildlife
385 Mountain Road, Cape Neddick ME 03902
This fun event introduces participants to the amazing adaptations of native owls. We'll meet under our education pavilion to learn about native owl species, their ecology, adaptations, and meet local representatives up close! Following the presentation, we'll take a short walk into the surrounding habitat to call for owls and listen for whooo might call back.

We welcome owl prowlers of all ages, but please remember that patience and a quiet atmosphere are crucial for owl prowling. 

There is a $7 suggested donation per person for these events, and reservations are required. Please email our Education and Outreach Fellow, Katie, to reserve your spot today.   Click here for more information.  

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