Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Busy, busy, busy...

Wildlife rehabilitation is in full swing, but it's been a very strange and often very sad and upsetting season thus far.  Many of the baby squirrels that I've gotten in had underlying issues or serious injuries, and one entire litter of three arrived dying at my door step right before Easter. They had been in the wrong hands far too long and were skin and bones, covered in dried-on diarrhea, and ice cold.  I worked on them like a maniac, determined to pull at least one of them through, but in the end I lost the battles.  There is only so much any rehabilitator can do, but it is hard to accept defeat.

My mentor Judy drummed a very insightful advice into my brain that keeps popping in my mind whenever tragedy strikes.  Judy taught me "Remember that they are never out of the woods until they are back IN the woods."  No kidding.  Sometimes I see it coming, but sometimes death hits me over the head with a 2 x 4...

I had gotten in two very young gray squirrels, sisters, and they simply would not gain weight.  Something was stunting their growth, and I dug deep into my bag of tricks to figure out what could be the cause.  One eventually died, and the other one barely hung on.  It was and still is in with two just slightly older nest mates, also girls, and those two are nearly double the weight of the little midget.  But when she opened her eyes at only about 2.5 oz (73 grams, to be exact), things started to change and she finally started to gain weight.  She now weighs around 100 grams, still below the usual weight of an open eyed baby gray squirrel, but nothing this spring seems normal.  Today I picked up a cat attack baby gray girl from a friend in Sturbridge whose eyes are also wide open at only 89 grams.  She has no visible injuries, but when it comes to cats we always pull out the antibiotics since even a tiny puncture wound will introduce killer bacteria.  So now I have two little minis mixed in with two normal sized baby grays, all girls.  The older three girls are downstairs in a larger cage now as I'm slowly weaning them.  Girls are winning this spring, I wonder if this has to do with the failed acorn crop last fall and lots of squirrels dying from starvation during the winter?...

I've been working on Mother's Day cards but cannot publish them until Dutchpapercrafts puts out the video release.  It should happen within the next few days, at least this time we're in sync with the upcoming special day.

Who knows what tomorrow will bring...  One phone call changes my entire day, but I'm used to it and never make plans that I cannot change.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Sigi,
    You are also busy :-)) Not only with you work with the animals but also for Darlene. I am looking forward to see your new release. I am also busy with some new releases for Darlene, so i wish you happy crafting!!
    Lots of love, Petra. xxx