Hoots, Howls, and Hollers
Sometimes I sit in the office signing checks or something else necessary but not so exciting and listen to the sounds of the season. Here are some of them that most people don’t get to hear, ever. It is mostly about a group of people, compromised animals, and being on task with the tasks that must be done to successfully complete the job.
I often hear:
- The murmur of voices of people going about their jobs…just an undefined murmur that says there is an established protocol; it is known; it is followed; it is necessarily unspoken above a whisper.
- The swish of a broom, the swipe of a mop, the tiptoeing over wet floors…just a tiptoe.
- The opening and closing of cages in intensive care, the scrubbing of inside cages, the crumpling of newspaper, the filling and emptying of the trash.
- The constant chitter, chatter of begging babies or protesting patients.
- The ring of the phone, the ring of the bell at the window indicating contact with the public and the delivery of new patients.
- The chop of food preparation, the whir of a blender, the beep of the microwave, the pebbly sound of crumbles into a dish.
- The clanging of dishes as they are washed and prepared for the next use, the cleaning of the counters and the removal of dried dishes.
- The hum of the air conditioner.
- The office murmurs as food is ordered, questions from the public are answered, business as usual.
- The subtle cheering at observing an egg hatching, awe at the unbelievable struggle to attain life.
- The sounds of outrage at some human misconduct resulting in horrendous and unnecessary injury.
- The scurry and stamping of little feet in boxes of animals getting ready to be released…
That might be the best. There are good and bad sounds of the season, but they all indicate a group of dedicated people are going about doing their jobs to give wildlife a second chance. We all understand the circle of life, but often absurd interference interrupts the natural cycle, and we are here to help. I am not sure what cold heart would have it any other way…what cold heart could walk by something needing help and look the other way. I prefer to listen to the sounds of the season and know we won’t and don’t ever look away.
This Week at Liberty
The intake total for the year is now at 3000.
Now that the male condor has gone, things are settling in to the normal routine of intakes, rehabbing, and medical care for the rest of the animals, both adult and orphans. I was out of town last week so I don’t have a lot of graphics to adorn this week’s update, but I did put together a video of one of the quail eggs hatching in Susie’s hand that might be interesting. We’re getting closer to fencing in the property at the site of the new facility at which time we’ll begin grading and smoothing for the foundations. I hope to have a photographic record of this when it occurs. So for now, enjoy the video and try to stay cool as you listen to the sights and sounds of…LIFE!
Two Liberty volunteers – Laureen Ong and Richard Skwarek, recently purchased a weekend at Lees’s Ferry Lodge at an Audubon event. The trip included a tour of the California condor facility conducted by Chris Parish. Chris was unavailable to give the tour but Eddie Feltes stepped in which turned out to be a lucky turn for Laureen and her husband. Eddie had just brought number 272 back after five months of rehabilitation and medical work at Liberty Wildlife and was about to release the bird. The two Liberty people got to experience the return of 272 and another juvenile into the wild.
We actually don’t get to hatch many eggs at Liberty, and seeing one go through the hatching process is even more rare. But on May 20, all present in the ICU held their breath for almost 6 minutes as this little quail struggled to be born! With a final kick and push, he emerged into the open to join dozens of others being raised at the facility prior to being released.