Wednesday, April 24, 2002

Wild Again

Celebrating the wildlife releases of the PAWS Wildlife Center

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Injured Baby Animal step by step guide

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Progressive Animal
Welfare Society

PO Box 1037
Lynnwood, WA 98046

Signs of Spring
by Kevin Mack, PAWS Wildlife Naturalist
As I watched two Hutton’s vireos build a nest recently, I could no longer deny that spring had arrived. The nest, made of moss, lichen, grass and spider webs, was being constructed in a rhododendron bush less than 10 feet from the door to the PAWS Wildlife Center. Inside the center there were signs of spring as well. Baby owls, squirrels, ducks and rabbits had already arrived and the phone was ringing off the hook.

Pileated woodpecker

Notice how this woodpecker I spotted last week in Redmond uses its tail to support its body against the trunk of the tree.

Getting Wild The local wildlife tends to get a bit…well, wild during breeding season so many of the phone calls PAWS receives at this time of year relate to human/wildlife conflicts. To a woodpecker, a wood-sided house is simply a large hollow tree with excellent acoustics for performing a little territorial drumming. To a male robin, a reflection in a window is a very real rival trying to move in on his territory. These animals don’t make a distinction between “natural” and “human created” objects so they are simply applying what they know to whatever objects they encounter. This behavior is often distressing for the homeowner, but there are many ways to address these problems without causing harm to the animals involved. The PAWS website contains helpful information for dealing with human/wildlife conflicts or you can call PAWS directly at (425) 787-2500, extension 817.
New Babies Are Not So Alone As recent admissions to the wildlife center indicate, many species are already birthing/hatching their young and others will follow suit as the summer progresses. As you go about enjoying the springtime weather, you are likely to spot some of the new additions to our local community. At times you may find babies that appear to be alone. While you may be concerned for their health and safety, usually there is no cause for worry. It is very common for wild animals to leave their young unattended for periods of time. Usually, mom and/or dad are nearby, foraging so they can supply their young with the energy they need to grow. If you come across a baby that you suspect may be orphaned or abandoned, please leave the animal where it is (unless it is in immediate physical danger) and call the PAWS Wildlife Center for further instructions. The experienced staff at the PAWS Wildlife Center can help you differentiate between an animal that is truly an orphan, and an animal that is simply waiting for mom and dad to bring the next meal. If you prefer, follow our step-by-step orphaned baby animal guide.

Enjoy the spring weather and enjoy the spring wildlife. Remember, if a problem should arise, PAWS is only a phone call or a mouse click away!

Help us help Washington's wildlife
This summer the PAWS Wildlife Hospital will help more than 4,000 injured or orphaned animals. Please help us help wild animals recover and run, hop, or fly free once again. Your gift to PAWS will ensure that we can help thousands of wild animals.

Wildlife Release tally: April 3 to April 16, 2002
9 Virginia Oppossum
1 Eastern Gray squirrel
1 Glaucous-winged Gull
1 Varied Thrush
3 Rock Dove
1 Band-tailed Pigeon

Wildlife Release tally: 2002 Year to Date
65 mammals and birds

All rights reserved. 2002 Progressive Animal Welfare Society

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