This Week at Liberty January 7, 2013

Hoots, Howls, and Hollers

Researchers seem to agree that the best thing to keep an old mind chugging along is to take up something new to keep those synapses snapping  alertly…like learning the guitar or speaking a foreign language.  I bought into the theory and started my own attack on Spanish. Studying Latin in school didn’t do much to help me speak a foreign language.   I can, however, diagram the most difficult of sentences and recognize stem words with some accuracy.  And, while my synapses may be a little quicker in firing, my Spanish is still in its fetal form.

So, I am planning to add to my brain enrichment exercises by taking on a fuller understanding of the concept of “sustainability”.  This might have something to do with the three interns from ASU’s School of Sustainability that have been and are impacting what we do at Liberty Wildlife.  While this is all very exciting, the more I read the more overwhelmed I become.  I feel a little bit like I am taking on the preterit tense in Spanish before I am really ready.

For those of you who, like me, think you understand the concept of sustainability…just start reading about it.  You will run into the likes of “carrying capacity, human impact on biodiversity, consumption of resources, economic development, social and cultural elements, peace, security and social justice, human relationships to nature, etc.”  I ask myself, “What else could there be?”

On a global level, it might be the most important thing to take on, sorry Español.  But for me that means starting locally with my own little world to attain proficiency, and as I am able to accomplish meager understandings I will take on the larger arenas.  It’s sort of like casting a small pebble into a very large pond; hopefully my little ripples will undulate out to a larger and larger grasp of this very important topic.  For right now I “get” the notion of “maintaining, supporting, and enduring…..and to meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.”

But, how do we do that? I understand that this is a call to action and that somehow we have to all agree (now there’s a concept) on which way to go first to minimize negative impacts, to maintain a balance between social, economic and environmental arenas, etc.  Already overwhelmed, I am just going to have to break it down to what I can do now in my little world to spread the word as I understand it.  You will see in some upcoming blogs how I, and Liberty Wildlife, will engage in our own little dialogue about the importance of sustainability to all of us.

Hasta la proxima!

This Week at Liberty

Posted by Terry Stevens

The total intake for the year is now at 15.

Well, we started the new year off on a busy note. This is normally a quiet time as we begin to prepare for the onset of “baby bird season.” Maybe it’s global climate change, but things are happening at unusual times in unusual places and it seems to be having an effect on the intake window. But, the volunteers are always up to the task and as we plow ahead into 2013, all we can do is our best for the animals that arrive at our door…

Insulated woodpecker

One of the last intakes of 2012 was this little gila woodpecker who somehow got sprayed with some insulating foam. This is the material that is injected into open areas and expands to fill in gaps and provides a higher thermal barrier, keeping the interior of structures either cooler or warmer depending on what your goal is.  Unlike the sticky stuff from glue traps that we have seen many times before, this polyurethane hardens into a solid mass and because of its makeup, it cannot be dissolved without using chemicals that would do more harm to the animal. All we can do is cut as much off as we can and then maintain the bird until its feathers molt and regrow.


A bad break for a cooper’s hawk

Cooper’s hawks are very active and since they don’t like to be immobilized, they are difficult to rehab successfully. This adult bird (note the deeper color of the eyes) came in with a serious wing injury – but a great fighting spirit. Every effort is being made to heal the wing and make the bird healthy again.


Sharon takes the fox out of the carrier

Sad little girl

Jan listens to her heart

A female gray fox was brought in last week from a golf course. She was not presenting any evidence of overt trauma, but was obviously in pain and not feeling well. Poison was the initial suspect and after an exam by Jan, she was placed in a warm, quiet enclosure to drop her stress level. Unfortunately, whatever was causing her distress took her life overnight. More testing is being done.


This IS a three person job (photo by Cheyenne Herzog)

Alright, maybe a four person job.  (photo by Cheyenne Herzog)

She has piercing eyes

Heading for the enclosure  (photo by Cheyenne Herzog)

It’s warmer here than up north…

“This looks like a nice place to get better…”

Our last encounter with a California condor was sad and short-lived, but another one came in last Thursday night and we’re hopeful this one will fare better. Once again, lead poisoning is the culprit. This bird, number 409, is a fairly young female and when she was removed from her transport carrier she showed she has a good spirit going into her treatment. After getting fluids and an initial evaluation, she was placed in a sunny enclosure and allowed to acclimate to her “private room” as the treatment is scheduled to begin.


If you had trouble opening the video last week, I apologize. Videos can be saved in MANY formats and trying to find one that works for everybody’s computer is difficult.  With John’s help, we added a second button in hopes that people who have PC’s can open the file, so try it again…or go to YouTube and access it there.


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One Response to This Week at Liberty January 7, 2013

  1. Gail says:

    Bravo for life long learning! And the positive about sustainability is that it does touch just about every aspect of our lives, so there is opportunity everywhere.

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