Hoots, Howls, and Hollers – January 3, 2023
Last and First Critters of the Year… and Upcoming Events
New year, new beginning, new things to talk about. But first, let’s reflect on our year-end. Our intake for 2022 was 11,111 wildlife in need of our care. That is impressive. One of the last animals we took in was a bald eagle. And one of the first of this new year was a coatimundi. (See its exciting release too!) This makes things interesting around here, year ‘round.
The way we make this all happen is through our connections with you, our fan base, our donors, our members. I want to talk a little bit about how valuable our memberships are, in case you haven’t joined up yet.
There are six levels of membership at Liberty Wildlife. Here’s a link to all of them. Just in case you want to save clicking around, here are some of the benefits. Now follow along. Members get to participate in “members only” nature walks/birding trips. Members receive a 10% discount on merchandise in our gift shop. You’ll also get member guest passes, differing in number dependent on your level of membership. At the higher levels, members can sign up for an hour with one of our wildlife trainers/handlers. Members will also receive invitations to participate in especially scheduled releases.
But the very best benefit of being a member of Liberty Wildlife is knowing that you are an integral part of helping thousands of creatures as they hopefully are returned to the wild. You are integral in helping to educate thousands and thousands of people to learn about and gain appreciation of the value of nature to all our lives. You participate in our mission of recycling feathers and bird parts to assist in maintaining the culture of native people through the Non-Eagle Feather Repository.
That is a lot to pat yourself on the back for. So… pat, pat, pat! And thank you!
We also want to be sure you are aware of the many things we do during the year to continue to thrill the public regarding the mission of Liberty Wildlife.
For instance… we are hosting a new event this year – on February 19th from 1pm until 4pm – that we are sure will have wide interest. It’s both a family friendly afternoon event with adult appeal. Featured, for kids of all ages, will be the presentation of the Great Arizona Puppet Theater’s “Creepy, Crawly, Wild and Wooly.” Couple that with our Sippin’ the Spirits of the Southwest beer/wine garden, and there is the appeal for everyone 21 years and older. And of course guests are free to wander our Interpretive Trail and visit our Interactive Room, as well.
Watch for more details and check our website and social media. For now… just put this date on your calendar – February 19th!
Following that event, later this spring season there will be our annual Baby Animal Shower benefiting our Orphan Care program. And in addition, our Arbor Day/Wish Tree event is also in the early stages of planning… more details to follow!
Suffice it to say, we are always working to provide you, our beloved public, with exciting new adventures both on our campus and off. We have learned in the past that seeing us at other events like the Luminarias at Desert Botanical Garden and The Christmas Village at the Verde Canyon Railroad are excellent ways to introduce new people to our mission. It is important for all of you to see in person what we do on our own campus.
Join as a member (or renew) and use your membership to take advantage of all that we do… so that we can do even more of it!
Happy New Year to all of you from all of us.
This Week @ Liberty – January 3, 2023
It’s hard to believe the holidays are over, but alas, they’ve come and gone as they always do. We’re fresh into 2023 with brand new goals and bright-eyed ideas; like most of us, we have grand plans for what comes this year. But like anything in our lives, it’s important to be flexible. No well made plan—yes, even the perfect ones—can foresee every disastrous mishap that may occur to drive us off track.
Which is why it’s important to not only be flexible, but patient, too. Life happens at breakneck speed; for us and the wildlife who inhabit this world with us. For us human inhabitants, we must learn the art of patience. We understand all good things come to those who wait (there’s a lot more to it than that, of course, but you get the gist). For wildlife, there is an inherent patience we’ll never quite understand. A patience for the hunt, for survival, for adapting to the environment. They ‘go with the flow’, as it were, in a way we humans tend to struggle with.
It’s the reason I implore you to take that deep breath and release all that built up energy of the past year, to learn patience with yourself and your surroundings. We can’t plan for all the things that might happen in our lives, but we can be flexible, and learn to take things in strides…and with a big smile for what comes next.
Last Intakes of 2022
Though we didn’t quite get to as many intakes as we did in 2021, we still managed to have a whopping 11,111 animals come through our doors! Which is an insane and impressive number, considering all the work that goes into rehabilitating these animals (a worthy cause, of course!).
While our last intake of the year was a Mourning Dove, we did have some notables come through prior to the end of 2023. First and foremost is a mature Bald Eagle; found in Show Low, AZ on December 31, he weighs in at just under six pounds. His injuries are indicative of some kind of blunt force trauma, though how it happened we’re uncertain. We do know he sustained damage to his left eye, and he’s thinner then we’d like him to be. After assessment by the Vets, he will remain in our ICU with a steady dose of antibiotics and eye-drops until we can gauge the next step.
That brings us to the Barn Owl who came to us on December 30. His rescuers found him on the road, wrapped him securely in a blanket, and brought him straight here. Upon intake, he was lethargic and severely dehydrated. After receiving subcutaneous fluids (right beneath the skin) and some medicine to help with shock, this Barn Owl perked up.
For both, we can make assumptions on what happened; maybe they were hit by a vehicle or took a nasty spill. Either way, they’re in good hands here at Liberty Wildlife. We’ll be sure to keep an eye on them as they remain in ICU to heal and recover.
What You Can Do For Wildlife in 2023
I’m sticking with the theme of goals and ‘newness’ for this blog; and for good reason. January is a month where most of us look at where we were and figure out where we want to be. We set new goals for ourselves, and hopefully, check off goals we were able to complete last year. Much like helping by becoming a member here at Liberty Wildlife, there’s another way, too:
By being mindful of your place in this world, and recognizing the things you do can have an impact on where it goes.
There’s a number of ways to do this, yet the simplest ways are the easiest to immerse into our lives. If you’re looking to plant this spring, consider native species that are drought tolerant in our heat but bring hummingbirds to for their nectar. Rather than using that harmful pesticide to keep away the bugs, it’s worth looking in to a natural pest control that won’t harm the wildlife. Picking up trash and recycling are two big ones and will remain so for time to come.
Bird boxes for American Kestrels and other species of second-cavity nesters not only helps them during spring and mating season, but brings you closer to wildlife. If there’s anything I’ve learned these past few years, it’s that interacting with wildlife on a daily basis makes me far more aware of my footprint…
And makes me want to leave a positive impact in the world because of it.
So, if you’re looking for a new kind of goal to add to your list of New Year’s Resolutions, I ask you to consider your own impact toward wildlife—and what might happen if you took those little strides in helping them on the daily.
Not going to lie, this is going to be the shortest blog I ever write! It wasn’t for lack of trying, either; we just started from the bottom with intakes, the whirlwind holiday season is behind us, and after taking in 11,111 intakes this year, I think we deserve a moment of clarity before baby season hits us.
Still, I can’t leave without my favorite section. Without further ado, I present to you the very first Notable Mentions of 2023!
One of our girls (aka California Condors) molted a rather large feather! (1 picture)
An Anna’s Hummingbird comes in during a rainy day (1 picture)
Who wore it better? Ceci or Animal Ambassador Austin (White-Tailed Hawk)? (2 pictures) (credit to Ceci)
Double rainbow after a long day of rain (2 pictures) (credit to Debbie)
Close-up of Animal Ambassador Ada (Great Horned Owl) (1 picture) (credit to Ceci)
If no one’s told you, we hope you had a wonderful holiday season and a happy new year! Remember to come see us on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays from 10am-1pm; of course, keep an eye out for events that may pop up and an eye on our social media (just because it’s fun and you get to see more of us that way!).
Until next time!
Posted by Acacia Parker
Public Outreach Coordinator