Wildlife Center of Virginia Blog

Learning about Endangered Wildlife in Virginia

I wasn’t sure what to expect when I started my rehabilitation externship at the Wildlife Center. I mostly wondered what kind of animals I’d work with;  I  realized pretty quickly that I did not know the wildlife in Virginia as well as I thought I did. Most embarrassingly, I honestly thought there were not nearly as many species of hawks as there are in Virginia. We got in every type very quickly, and I thought it was really cool to see them up close in person.

Respecting the “Cute” Wildlife

Rehabilitation externs at the Wildlife Center of Virginia often spend the day running around performing the next thing on a 10,000-page to-do list. It’s hard, physical, mind-intensive work. The hardest part is not getting too comfortable when around patients. Yes, they are cute. Yes, they are beautiful. But, every day I had to make sure that I didn’t let myself get too caught up in that. In the midst of everything that an extern does, I had to take the time each day to focus on the individual animals I had in front of me at any given moment. When you are tired, accidents can happen.

My Big Year

It’s official. This past July marked my one-year anniversary at the Wildlife Center of Virginia! Compared to some of my coworkers, that’s a pretty short amount of time -- a really short amount of time in some cases -- but it’s an important milestone to me, and it’s given me a chance to step back and reflect on the past 12 months.

For the Love of Bees

Growing up, my dad taught me not to fear honeybees or bumblebees-- something he learned as a beekeeper who frequently visited his hives without gloves, suit, or hat. I remember him finding bees, spiders, daddy-longlegs, and all kinds of critters in the yard and holding them for me to see. I was exposed to many of nature’s hidden creatures this way --up close -- before he returned them to go about their business.

Happy Earth Day 2017!

At the Wildlife Center, we like to think every day is Earth Day! In our daily activities of repairing and rehabilitating wild animals and educating the public on coexisting with wildlife, we hope to have a positive impact on not only one individual animal but on the population of wildlife as well. A healthy ecosystem relies on a healthy wildlife population and vice versa. So many of the animals we see at the Wildlife Center play crucial roles in the health of our environment -- vultures, bats, and opossums just to name a few!

Immerse

Sitting down to write this blog, I perused the published posts from other staff, interns, and externs, pondering what I might think is important enough to share with you all. Drawing a blank, as most people do when put on the spot to write something momentous, naturally I stalled and clicked on the WordPress website. I was greeted with a quote at the head of the website;

A Lesson from Buttercup

Before my rehab externship at the Wildlife Center of Virginia, I had no experience with birds of prey. Consequently, I was apprehensive and nervous around them for my first few weeks! The first time I walked into Buttercup’s enclosure (Buttercup is a Black Vulture and one of WCV’s education ambassadors) the extern who was training me said, “Be careful, he usually tries to attack you when you walk out.” He was politely sitting on his perch but when I turned to leave his enclosure after delivering his dinner, he started chasing me.

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