Hoots, Howls, and Hollers
Thanksgiving for me is a time for reflection…and of course it is reflection on the many things I am thankful for. Here are a few of the things that surfaced this year in no particular order.
Ten of many things that I am thankful for:
- Work that allows me to be passionate about what I need to do.
- Friends who follow me along this path.
- Family that indulge my passions.
- Donors who allow me to carry out my jobs.
- Volunteers, board members, and staff who help to fulfill my passions.
- An environment that supports my endeavors.
- For health and energy.
- Teachers of all kinds who make me better at what I need to do.
- Nature, the source of my passions.
- And, for the beautiful new facility that we will move into in 2016!
(I thought I’d use this opportunity to share a picture of a great cake that Carol Suits’ son made for Megan’s birthday recently… It was absolutely extraordinary! – TW@L)
This Week @Liberty
The intake total for the year is now at 6423.
Since I took my T’Giving break last week, I have a ton of stuff for this week’s update. So let me jump right in and start posting nearly 40 photos in a record-breaking edition of TW@L…
Pad Party -
On Sunday the 22nd, we held a “Pad Party” at the site of the new facility. Lots of supporters were there getting a look at what we’re doing with their donations (and hopefully convince them to keep up their support!) The event took place in near perfect weather with some picnic-style food and drink, offered the chance to tour the construction site, win some basketball tickets in a raffle, meet some Education ambassadors, and participate in the release of a great horned owl (see last week’s TW@L for the video). They also got to autograph the wall of the rehab wing if they wanted to. It was a very nice get together and everyone seemed to enjoy the opportunity to look into the future of Liberty Wildlife!
A new eagle arrives -
A golden eagle was brought in by Kyle (AGFD) last week. He was found near the Flagstaff area where it seems he flew into the windshield of a semi trailer truck. Although the windshield was broken, the bird did not break any bones but possibly suffered some internal injuries. His blood was tested and showed exposure to lead but below the toxic threshold. He did test positive for aspergillosis and is currently being treated for that while he remains under observation.
Two weeks of medical activity -
This is two weeks worth of Vet Night updates including a common loon which is a rare visitor to the valley. Because of their design, loons can only take off from a long stretch of water so if they land on dry ground, they are stuck. Our visitor was released almost as soon as he arrived. We also took in the usual suspects of GHO’s, RTH’s, Cooper’s, and screeches. Several improved enough to move outside, one step before release. One red tail turned out to have been peppered with a multitude of pellets and pellet fragments. In his subsequent crash, he fractured a wing and broke his leg. The Cooper’s hawks presented an expected variety of collision injuries for which they are being treated.
A GHO has a bad time in a chimney -
One of our great Rescue /Transport volunteers went out to extract an owl from a local chimney last week. Fireplace rescues are difficult enough, but it seems that the owner thought the noises were coming from a rat in the chimney so he put a glue trap into the smoke chamber below the flue. By the time the owl was extracted, he was totally covered with both soot and thick coating of glue causing the tray to adhere to his head as he was removed. When he arrived in the ICU some of his rictal bristles (facial feathers) needed to be cut and special techniques were used to clean the glue off followed by a complete bath. This was made even more difficult because our water heater was out of service when he came in and water had to be heated in the microwave to clean him properly. He is actually doing well right now but will need to be in our care for quite some time due to the extensive damage to his feathers.
Education Continues -
Among other programs, some Cub Scouts recently attended a Liberty event at the Gilbert Riparian Area show. The scouts learned about various owls and other native Arizona birds they might see when they are outside enjoying nature!
Rain Richard is one of the supervisors of our new facility construction project who recently toured the current site to learn more about what we do. She brought her family along including her two sons who seemed to enjoy the animals, especially the baby desert tortoise which they got to hold. Here is what Rain wrote about the tour:
I wanted to share how special our trip to Liberty Wildlife was. Jax wrote about it at school to share with his teacher. I’ll translate since there is no Rosetta Stone for first graders yet.
“Over the weekend I went to Liberty Wildlife. I saw a raven. I saw a great horned owl. I saw a red hair hawk. I got to hold a baby tortoise. “
I think he meant red tailed hawk but I’m pretty impressed with everything he remembered.
Thanks again for such a special moment in life,
The Richard Family
Not bad at all for a first grader (and a future Liberty volunteer)!