Hoots, Howls, and Hollers
A heartfelt thanks goes out to the myriad of people who helped make this year’s Wishes for Wildlife such a huge sell-out success. To Peggy Cole, Carol Suits and the Guardians (too many hard workers to name, but you know who you are), John Glitsos and Terry Stevens for the Liberty Feud game and the videos, the benefit chairs, Susie Alofs and Bobi Seredich, Michael Barnard for his professional assistance, Joelle Hadley as Emcee, the Liberty Wildlife staff who pitched in when needed, the education volunteers, our Corporate Chairs Patti and Ken Vegors and Cr8tive Events for the beautiful décor. And, it frightens me to think what I would do without the assistance of Mark Kenger and the SRP AV crew. All of these folks plus the roomful of attendees made the event a huge success. Thanks to each of you for bringing all the moving parts together in symphony.
And while at the event I was reminded of Balinda’s books which were a donated item for the auction. I had an opportunity after the dust settled to pick them up and re-read them. The bottom line is, EVERYONE WITH YOUNGSTERS should add these three books to your favorite kid’s collection. Go to our store, www.libertywildlife.net and place your order for: I Got Barfed on by a Turkey Vulture, Tiny But Mighty, and Who is Making that Noise? They are jammed in a fun way with simple but important facts, with charming original children’s art and a whole lot of heart and soul about nature and its denizens. You can’t go wrong with this fun way to educate your young charges about the importance of these critters in the greater scheme of things
We need to raise more young people to support our mission in one way or another.
These Weeks @ Liberty
The intake total for this year now stands at 2038. (Yeah, read that number again!)
We’re BAAAAACCCKKK! If you didn’t notice, the intake number is now above 2,000! Three weeks ago when we did the last full edition, it had just past 1,000 during the week. It is really getting busy around the facility, but then again, it is always busy this time of year. We have had a lot of activity since the last full posting on April 20th, with new injured animals arriving, some getting released, more fund-raising taking place (a necessary job to keep the organization running and in view of our planned move to a new facility within the year), and more babies animals than ever in our care, all the people of Liberty Wildlife are working tirelessly to provide the best care possible for all the animals that we take in. Let’s review the past few weeks…
On April 23, AZGFD brought in a seriously sick juvenile Bald Eagle for treatment. The bird was down and obviously in distress. Unfortunately the bird died within a day or so, and we’re waiting for test results to determine if his death was caused by lead, West Nile Virus, some other pathogen, or a combination of toxins.
Well, we don’t really get many toads at Liberty, but once in a while one hops through our doors… A few years ago we got one in and I’ll never forget the presentation listed on his sheet: “Disoriented” OK, I’m not sure how a toad can be disoriented – or how you could tell if he were – but we got another one recently. This one appeared healthy and we suspect it was somebody’s pet that either got loose or was set free. They are in fact natives so release was in his prescription.
Owls come in all shapes and sizes, what with 14+ species to choose from in North America. A majority of people don’t realize that outside of Great Horned owls and barn owls, most owls around here are pretty small. This flammulated owl came in recently with serious head/back injuries of unknown origin and served to show how diminutive and fragile these little guys can be.
By the same token, this GHO was brought in from Luke AFB not long ago. All birds are seen as hazards to aircraft operation and when they get too close to the Air Force, they are routinely removed. This little guy was lucky enough to have been taken with no physical damage, unlike the majority of raptors which are removed by fatal means.
I know this sounds like a Monty Python routine, but these two Blue Swedish (if you have another thought as to what they are, send it to me!) ducklings were recently taken from a lake where they had probably been dumped after Easter. Sadly, people still persist in buying chicks and ducklings for “decoration” around Easter time. Then a week or two later, they are no longer seen as cute and are summarily dumped in any convenient lake or puddle to fend for themselves, which, unfortunately, they are NOT able to do. Please help pass the word that live animals are NEVER an appropriate gift unless the receiver knows what they’re getting and is prepared to make the long-term commitment to maintaining a live animal, regardless of the species.
On a more natural note, this mother mallard and her 12 ducklings hatched and were living in a backyard pool on the northwest side. The thoughtful owners fed them for 4 weeks and finally decided they needed their pool back so I went out there early one day recently and with the help of the family, apprehended the ducks. Within three days, Megan took them to another family up north who had expressed a desire for the water fowl and they now live in beautiful surroundings on Oak Creek!
These fluffy babies are the products of a recent nest relocation for a power company by Nina and the Research and Conservation team. The two little red tails are being carefully raised in the office and the feather trailer until they are old enough to join their foster mom in the outside enclosure. Lots of camouflage and hand puppets are in use to prevent improper imprinting as the baby raptors are fed several times each day.
When birds come in for treatment, they sometimes have to spend an extended period at Liberty, depending on the injury. With migratory birds, this can become an even longer process if their recovery doesn’t coincide with the ongoing migration. In some cases, we have to hold the bird until the next passage of the flock, either north or south, to give the bird a chance to travel with the group. Recently Claudia took our young rehabbing Swanson’s hawk out to join hundreds of other Swainsons’ as they passed through Arizona. Melanie Herring got to do the honors and the bird landed in some trees nearby, preened for a while, then flew off to join the crowd of fellow travelers!
And now, just some moments from this year’s Wishes for Wildlife!
************************This Sunday is the Born to be Wild motorcycle event! Go to Liberty Wildlife’s Facebook page OR www.twogalsevents.com for details!!********************************