Center for Wildlife Monthly E-newsletter

No Beds in the Hospital
Twice this season we have had to make the difficult decision to defer patients from coming to the clinic for several days at a time.  As a staff and organization that dedicates ourselves towards making a difference for local wildlife in need, this has been an excruciating decision. Yet despite growing our clinic budget in conjunction with an increase in admissions, growing our volunteer and intern team, and growing diagnostics to get patients out quicker to keep space in our outgrown building, we just could not keep up.  S everal other facilities or home-based rehabilitators have ceased operations in the past year because of the growing impact of human activities on local wildlife and the environment, coupled with no dedicated government funding for this work, and a lack of value and understanding of the link between human and the health of our environment, which has put an even bigger strain on our small team and building.   

But one thing we do have is hope and resolve. The curtailed admissions have been very temporary, and we have been able to defer callers to the rehabilitators that remain throughout the states of ME, MA, and NH. Our clinic staff are working long hours to ensure the 200 patients that are in our care are getting everything they need to return successfully to the wild.  Our fundraising staff, volunteers, and board of directors work daily to spread the word and expand our donor base and resources.  Our education team also works 365 days per year to help empower our public to take action for our environment and prevent negative impacts.  And our executive director and capital campaign committee are working tirelessly to come up with short and long term solutions to the very large and growing demand for our services from the public. 

What can you do?  Consider a flex volunteer shift.  If you are retired or have extra time and have a love for wildlife, consider becoming a licensed wildlife rehabilitator and getting your volunteer hours and training through our clinic program.   Make a gift today to support our efforts. Contact your local state senators or representatives and let them know you would like to see funding dedicated towards this work. And spread the word about the unique and integral work that Center for Wildlife provides despite our "shoestring budget" and cramped quarters.  We couldn't do it without you! 
"Welcome to our Wild Family"
Annual Open House
Sunday, Sept. 10, 11-3pm

The Center for Wildlife has been fortunate enough to welcome two new non-releasable wild animal Education Ambassadors into our family this year, including Wilbur the Virginia opossum and Violet the turkey vulture. On top of that, we had a porcupine patient give birth while in care. We have also welcomed new members of staff, volunteers and interns into our wild family. As such, the theme for Center for Wildlife's Open House this year is "Welcome to our Wild Family!" 

We are all connected to our wild neighbors, whether we celebrate that or not. Their habitats are our habitats; their homes are our homes. Join us to learn about our wild neighbors and meet some of our beautiful wildlife ambassadors up close, a rare opportunity to be in the presence of animals we may only catch glimpses of in our local fields and forests.

There are only a handful of centers like ours in Northern New England. We are honored to do this work, and this event helps people understand that our own personal well-being is intricately tied to that of our local wildlife and the environment, even if those links are not always obvious. We will be joined by partners in the field of conservation medicine, research, and environmental education including Mt. Agamenticus Conservation Region, White Pine Programs, York Land Trust, and others, for a day of education and activities for all ages.

This event typically draws over 300 community members at the Center for Wildlife and gives the public a chance to meet the staff, volunteers, and live ambassadors at our biggest awareness event of the year. Participants can learn about New England wildlife and our unique work through live animal presentations about what we have in common with our wild neighbors and how to live alongside each other.

The day includes:
* Tours of our baby bird room to observe wildlife rehabilitation in action
* Wildlife releases
* Nature crafts and activities
* Face painting
* Education Programs
* CFW Raffle, including personal experiences with some of our amazing animal ambassadors
* "Baby Shower" table where folks can drop off urgently needed donations for the hundreds of baby animals we see each year
* A photo opportunity with our wildlife ambassadors as well as our Henry cut out! - BYOC (bring your own camera)

There is a $5.00 per person suggested donation for this event, with proceeds going directly to help fund our work.  To learn more or to see the program of events for the day, click here.  We hope to see you there!
Patient Spotlight

"Tiger Duck"
Reason for admission: Attacked by Bengal Tiger. You read that right! After 31 years there are 3 most common reasons for injuries to wildlife: hit by car, caught by domestic cat, and pollution/toxicity. But last week an unlucky mallard duck landed in the Bengal Tiger's enclosure at York's Wild Kingdom. Luckily, the tiger is well fed and cared for, so ended up "playing" with the duck like cats often do instead of just killing prey. When the caretakers realized what was happening, they were able to lure the tiger from the duck with its regular food and brought her straight to CFW. 

He was very quiet and understandably in shock upon admission. Clinic Intern Coordinator Diana Dumais performed the initial examination and found deep wounds on his head, neck, and face. He was stabilized and started on antibiotics, and the next day He was able to go under anesthesia while our Medical Clinic Director, Sonja Ahlberg, put in 22 sutures at 3 wound sites. His wounds are responding well to treatment, and he has been given wrist bumpers to prevent this high strung species and individual from injuring himself in captivity. He is eating well and is amazingly bright and strong considering his trauma.

Mallards are year round in our region, though populations from Canada migrate overhead beginning in the fall to head to Southern US. Mallards in our region do migrate from ponds and lakes that freeze over to moving water. We recommend that you do not feed ducks after September or October because you may promote them to stay too long and end up in a frozen habitat. Also, never feed ducks or any wild animal bread. It is absent of nutrition and causes malnutrition and digestive issues.  Instead, enjoy watching them fly overhead to safer wintering grounds!
Squirrels and Turtles...Round 2, or is it 3??

Historically in our region small mammals like squirrels, cottontails, and opossums had 2 litters per year.  One in the spring and another in the late summer/early fall.  However, in response to a changing climate these mammals are breeding earlier and earlier, and there is seemingly no lull in babies during the summertime.  Turtles are also responding to a changing climate by emerging in March instead of May, and developments and plazas that fill in wetlands displace turtles so that they are on the move from March through October instead of the typical movements which for most species were restricted to mainly during nesting and hibernating seasons.   

What does this mean?  Small mammals plant our forests, provide food for "sexy" wildlife species like our hawks and owls, and even reduce tick populations through their impeccable grooming habits.  Turtles are voracious when they wake up each spring and can be credited for consuming large amounts of mosquito larvae and other insects.  They have also been walking this earth for millions of years.  Read below for simple tips on keeping turtles and mammals safe this season. 
  1. Delay tree work until October 15th, when most mammals are done nesting
  2. Keep an eye out for turtles crossing roads, and if you spot one move it across the road in the direction it was facing
  3. If you have mammals in your attic or home, have someone come and perform one-way exclusions or block all holes after October 15th
  4. Keep cats indoors.  They are subsidized predators (meaning they do not hunt for food instead hunt for "fun") and kill billions of songbirds and small mammals in our country each year.  Its also safer for kitty and will expand their life expectancy by years. 
  5. If you find a turtle hatchling in the wild, do not take it from the wild and try to make it a pet.  This is illegal and inhumane and unfortunately why many of our species are threatened, endangered, or special concern.
If you find an injured or orphaned wild animal, call our Wildlife Assistance Hotline at 207-361-1400 for advice before taking an animal out of the wild.  You can also click here for information, or to find a wildlife rehabilitator closer to you.  
Good Day Maine

Have you seen our spot on Good Day Maine?  For the past year we have partnered with WGME CBS 13/Fox 23 to bring local wildlife into living rooms every other Monday. This is an amazing opportunity to talk about our unique work, reach thousands of individuals in a short clip, and help people learn how to minimize negative impacts to local wildlife and the environment in real time.  We are overwhelmed by how the entire crew at WGME are animal lovers.  Each time we enter the lobby everyone pours out of their offices and the newsroom to see "who we have brought today". Beyond the television segment, we also film a "Facebook Live" segment which allows social media viewers to watch and ask questions in real time.  We are delighted to have signed on for another full year of this partnership. Be sure to tune in! 

Community Survey

In your mind, what does Center for Wildlife do best? What can we do better? Which CFW activities are most important to you? We are looking for your thoughts and honest feedback, so we can continue to improve our programs and outreach in the community.
Will you donate 5-10 minutes of your time to click here and complete this quick survey? There are 20 questions, mostly multiple choice. Brownie points if you answer the 4-5 open response questions as well. You can get entered to win a CFW swag bag! Thank you so much for your time and thoughts!
Upcoming Events

Saturday, September 16th
All Day
Mount Agamenticus Trail Race
Mount A, Cape Neddick ME
This is an event for people with all levels of health and fitness to enjoy the outdoors and meet your own fitness goals. We look forward to supporting our partners in environmental education for a trail 5K & 1 mile Challenge.  The race and trails are Universally Accessible.  Click here to learn more.


Sunday, September 17th
York Land Trust Open House and Country Supper
1 Longmarsh Road, York ME
To celebrate their new headquarters, York Land Trust will host family-friendly activities including live animal demonstrations with the Center for Wildlife, apple cider pressing, hikes on our new Near Point Trail, and more. This event is free and open to the public, so please bring friends and family.  Click here for more info. 

Saturday, September 23rd
Coppal House Farm- Nature's Naughty Neighbors
118 North River Road, Lee NH
Come and learn about raptors, reptiles and mammals and meet some live animal ambassadors from Center for Wildlife up close and in person! Learn how to live with neighbors who might be overstepping their boundaries and how to politely and humanely get them to move on to another space that is more mutually beneficial. Don't forget to visit the raccoon maze too!   Click here for more info. 
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