We are so pleased to report on the progress of our on-going project; protecting local and native wildlife in Maine and NH. As pressures on local wildlife continue to increase- rapidly developing roadways, increased encounters between domestic pets and wildlife, and pollution and other threats to our waterbirds- we continue to see an increase for demand in our services. We are encouraged and inspired that as many members of our community want to help wildlife, and are working hard at sustainably answering this demand for services; while continuing to provide quality medical care and environmental education programming.
Summer and fall often bring a large patient load as fledgling songbirds and raptors run into trouble navigating their first flights. Their parents prepare them as best they can, but powerlines, vehicles, skyscrapers, and other non-natural construction can throw a huge wrench in their first lessons- especially those headed to South America! We also prepare as best we can for the second litter of mammals in New England, and the large influx of orphaned patients we typically receive as squirrel, opossum, porcupine, and other small mammal moms run into fatal challenges- leaving entire litters of neonates and juveniles too young to survive on their own.
Because of this large patient load, CFW typically recruits, trains, and provides hands-on experience to generally 10 interns and 20 volunteers each busy season (equating to about 1,200 non-paid staff hours each month); who in turn provide quality supportive care to our diverse species of patients. This allows the professional staff to provide expert diagnostics and medical care, and pursue research opportunities.
When hurricane Irene hit, the typical support coverage wasn't close to enough! This devastating storm resulted in the rescue of hundreds of baby (neonate) mammals that needed to be fed from 6am-11pm, (YIKES!) on top of the regular busy summer season patient load. As much as the center has an emergency response protocol, no one was prepared for the influx.
The professional staff brainstormed solutions and contacted as many local in-home rehabilitators as we could find. They were all at maximum capacity with baby mammals. A plea for help went on the CFW Facebook page and our call was answered swiftly and with heartwarming enthusiasm.
Amy Pierce, CFW's Volunteer and Intern Coordinator quickly got to work contacting folks, setting up training sessions, and organizing shifts of baby mammal feeders between the hours of 6am and 11pm! The printed word can not express how immensely grateful our staff is by the outpouring of community support, without which would more than likely have resulted in CFW having to turn animals away, or compromise the quality of care given to our other patients.
This is just one example of many of the typical challenges our wildlife are facing, and what it takes to help them through it! Although a hurricane is a natural occurence, when coupled with all of the other challenges our wildlife face it can mean catastrophy. With your generous contributions through global giving, we are excited to continue our work with and for wildlife and our community!
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