WILDLIFE MATTERS
Center for Wildlife Monthly E-newsletter

Center for Wildlife Is...
Recently, someone asked me why and how I have been involved with this organization for 13 years, wearing hats from Fundraiser to Woman on the Roof Removing an Ice Dam with an Ice Pick. We are always so busy moving from one season to the next that we don't often reflect.  I sat for a moment, and then the "why" started spilling out.  Because I grew up playing in the forest, connected to the earth, and have a deep sense of responsibility to steward it.  Because 95% of the animals brought to us are from human caused injuries and I believe we should do our part to right that balance.  Because Center for Wildlife doesn't need to wait for a study to be approved, or for a vote to go through; we can do the right thing for wildlife NOW and we do every day.  
The "how" is because I learn something every day.  My colleagues are learning, collaborating, incorporating new techniques, making new partnerships, and growing every day.  It is because although the animals are injured due to human caused injuries, you our community are the ones calling because you want to help, volunteering, bringing in animals, and supporting our work.  And because it truly is incredible to be in the presence of these majestic, goofy, strong, feisty, smelly, and a hundred other characteristics of 190 different species of animals that we treat every year.  

Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for the moral and financial support to continue this critical work.  We hope that you enjoy this "Center for Wildlife Is..." video that conveys how all of our staff feel about Center for Wildlife in a word.  
The Center for Wildlife Is...
The Center for Wildlife Is...
If you have time to reflect on why our organization is dear to your heart, or can describe it in a word, feel free to share it with me, I'd love to fuel our fire even more and share your words at an upcoming staff meeting.  We will also be holding our first ever phone-a-thon tomorrow evening, so perhaps we will connect over the phone!

Warm Regards on this Snowy Day,

-Kristen
The Spirit of Giving- Help us Reach our Goal
We are 1/4th of the way toward our $60,000 year end goal!  This funding will go not only towards our work this season, but it also allows us to fund our critical and unique work throughout the year.  We have asked all of our donors to renew their support with an increased gift to help with the unprecedented number of injured and orphaned wild animals that were brought to our door this year (1,800 and counting!).  To make your tax deductible gift today:
 
Online: Click the button below
Via Phone: 207-361-1400
By Mail: Center for Wildlife, P.O. Box 620, Cape Neddick, ME 03902

Did you know?  Only 3% of philanthropic giving goes towards wildlife and the environment.  With so little overall support, and no state or federal funding for this work, we truly could not do it without you! 
 
Long Tailed Duck Back to Migration
Last month we received a call from our partners at the Vermont Institute of Natural Science in Quechee, VT.  They had a long tailed duck that had become grounded during migration, and though they had provided initial treatment, they were grateful for Center for Wildlife to provide the final stages of rehabilitation and get him back to the sea.  We gladly accepted the bird, and when he came out of the travel box there was an audible sharp intake of breath at his beauty. What a gorgeous bird!  

Formerly known as an Oldsquaw, this special 
duck breeds in the Arctic!  They winter along both East and West coastal waters, and he was likely headed to the Atlantic when he ran into trouble.  More than just beautiful plumage, this impressive bird is one of the deepest diving ducks, heading up to 200 feet underwater for 
food.  

We got down to work conditioning and assessing this new patient.  He received an initial wash to improve waterproofing, daily tub time, bloodwork, and an X-Ray to rule out any underlying structural issues.   In just a couple of weeks, excellent waterproofing and flight in our 100-foot flight enclosure showed us that this bird was ready to return to the sea.  We invited our long-time facilities volunteer and US Coastguard Rich Bradway, who shares a deep love of the ocean with this bird, to do the honors.  Sarah and Rich headed to long sands where longtailed ducks have been spotted. They opened the box, and after a moment of taking in surroundings, the long tailed happily flew to the sea. Farewell, special visitor!  

Home for the Holidays
The last bird admitted in 2015 was a red-tailed hawk from York, ME.  She was found in someone's chicken coop, and instead of being angry the rescuers saw that she was injured.  This is not surprising, when wild animals look to domestic prey it is typically because they are young, injured, or do not have natural resources available.  And, of course you can throw in the occasional "lazy" hunter.  Upon examination our clinic staff found that the hawk was a first-year bird, and had an infection in one foot that had elevated to the condition of "bumblefoot".  This condition can cause significant damage to the foot, which can prove fatal as the feet and talons are the primary way that a raptor can feed themselves in the wild. 

Beyond covering the wound, putting her on antibiotics, keeping her fed, keeping stress levels down, and regular wound cleanings, our staff faced the challenge "how do you ensure that equal weight is put on the feet so that the second foot doesn't develop sores and bumblefoot?" The answer turned out to be determination, creative problem solving, expert care, and a strong will to survive.  Her feet were bandaged the whole time she was in care.  The epithelial cells (scales) take a long time to regenerate and become tough.  She healed twice but redeveloped sores on opposite feet.  Our clinic staff used a variety of bandages to relieve pressure and promote healing; from wool roving to sliced pool noodles, and ring and ball bandage techniques.  

But ultimately, the red tailed and our staff triumphed.  Over the course of her treatment she molted in her adult red tail, and remained spunky and fierce.  She would even fly at volunteer and staff heads when they went in to drop off food.  On her last medical check on Thanksgiving Day, she was ready to go.  Staff,
volunteers, and interns gathered for this bird whom everyone had been rooting for daily over the past 11 months.  When they held her for release, her determination was set in her face, and she took to the skies in a powerful flash of red and brown feathers.  As Sonja put it, "This was truly the best gift anyone could have asked for on Thanksgiving.  This is the reason we do this work, and we couldn't be more grateful to get her back into the wild after all she had endured.  She was so feisty and strong, she is going to do awesome out there."  
Last Chance Holiday Bazaar
Saturdays, 12/17

Have you been to our Holiday Bazaar yet this year? Hundreds of community members have joined us to meet our wild animal ambassadors up close, shop local and hand-crafted gifts, sip hot cocoa, and feel good about their holiday shopping.  

Our magical shop in the woods will be open for one last Saturday, and shoppers can enjoy 10% off all merchandise!  You can also purchase raffle tickets to local restaurants, and the chance to win the gorgeous fairy house by a local artist.  

Here are some highlights to look forward to this weekend: 

  • Tours and photo opportunities with our owl, hawk, falcon, Eastern gray squirrel, and porcupine ambassadors
  • Activities each weekend including children's author read aloud and signing
  • Local artisan art and products from Jupiter's Labyrinth, Nina Herlihy, Jenness Farm, and more
  • The chance to adopt an ambassador and sponsor their care
  • Hot cocoa and baked goods
  • Create your own glass and feathered ornament to take home
We hope to see you there!

Adoptions  
Our ambassadors live in large outdoor habitats that accommodate their needs, and travel to schools, libraries, senior centers, and other places in the community as part of our environmental education programs. Our inspiring friends also serve as foster parents to wild young of their species, showing them the ropes so that they can return successfully to the wild knowing who they are as a species, and how to survive. Through our Adopt an Ambassador program, these beautiful animals will continue to be the bridge that connects the community to a world that is usually only seen from a distance.

Adoption pays for the food, habitat and facilities maintenance, and staff time required to provide sanctuary and care to these magnificent creatures. Each of our ambassadors are available for adoption. You (or your gift recipient) are also welcome to come by and visit many of them between 9:00a - 5:00p each day. Click here to learn more, and to give a very unique and meaningful gift this season!

Tshirts
Limited edition Center for Wildlife t-shirts are available, online only!  Design whiz, conservationist, and wildlife lover Sammy Hartery put together these beautiful and whimsical "Love Me, Love My Quills" shirts inspired by our beloved Henry.  Click here to shop these one of a kind shirts that are available this month only in ladies', men's and children's sizes.  We look forward to seeing these around town!

Upcoming Events

Saturday, December 17th 
(1:00p - 4:00p)
Holiday Bazaar

Browse nature-inspired gifts like wild-crafted hemlock wreaths, handmade acorn earrings, organic jams, wildlife holiday cards, wildlife baby blankets, beaver-carved walking sticks, Ambassador Series books, herbal goodies from Jupiter's Labyrinth, and much more. Meet live animal ambassadors, staff and board members.  Shop local, save wildlife!
 
 
**This event is FREE

Friday, December 30th
(4:00p-5:30p)
Owl Prowl Series
Our popular Owl Prowl Series is back! 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.

This event has a suggested donation of $7 per participant
**Email Katie to reserve your spot today

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