Newsletter Archive

Wild Bunch Wildlife Rehabilitation Newsletter - December 2003

Wild Bunch wishes to give you a brief update of our activities during the month of December. We are a 501(c)(3) nonprofit Virginia organization devoted to the rescue, rehabilitation and release of native wildlife. 83 acres have been developed in the Northern Neck of Virginia near the Rappahannock River to serve as our refuge. The officers and directors are Erika Yery, Pat Crusenberry, Diana O'Connor, Charlene DeVol and Bonnie Brown.

As the year ends, we have compiled our intake figures for 2003. With the addition of a little brown bat we just received, in all, 430 birds, mammals and reptiles came into our care. This was a huge endeavor by everyone involved. We are very proud that so few of our animals succumbed to the various diseases that typically claim lives during the rehab season. By maintaining a careful vaccination schedule, for those animals that necessitate them, and carefully following the highest standards of cleanliness, we have been remarkably successful. By our estimate more than 85 percent of these animals were successfully released. There are always instances where an animal is too injured or sick to help, and the best we can do is keep them as comfortable as possible.

We are still receiving calls regarding foxes with mange. This situation will most likely continue as foxes are continually being forced to inhabit areas that are closer and closer to homeowners. We have been very pleased however, with the tremendous willingness of these individuals, and in some cases, the community, to help these foxes regain their health. We are hearing more people say that they have a desire to co-exist with them peacefully rather than forcing their relocation or death.

During this time of year, when the temperatures can still become fairly warm during the day, we anticipate more calls of people finding bats. When the temperature increases they are drawn out of hibernation but unfortunately, can easily lose their way back to the roost. With a steady supply of mealworms we can keep them well fed until warmer months allow us to release them. It is essential that we have a steady temperature in the fifties for at lease three days before safely releasing them.

If you have been following the local news stories, you should be aware that the Humane Society of the United States is actively promoting their Fur Free Century and enlisting the donation of fur items, ranging from coats to scarves to hats, for use in the rehabilitation of wildlife. This is a very important step in convincing individuals that donating fur for animals is much more humane than wearing it and continuing to support those raising and killing fur bearing mammals for profit.

This month our True Stories site is featuring a reprise of a favorite story by Erika. The Happy New Year Angel. This is the story of a very unexpected raccoon found by Erika on New Year's Day. Near death, she survived the odds and, after many months of care, was able to return to her home.

As always, we are grateful for your many generous donations. We could not manage the large scope of work we must accomplish without your help and support.

Please visit our website at to find out more about our refuge and the work we do, as well as how to contact us and make donations. Your comments and suggestions are always welcome. If you would like any friends or relatives added to our list of newsletter recipients email us at The more people that know about us and can find ways to contribute to the well being of our native Virginia wildlife the better for all.

We wish all of our Wild Bunch friends and family a very Happy New Year. May the coming year be kind to all of Mother Nature's creatures. May we find peace in our hearts and homes and continue to find ways to help all of our wildlife.