Wild Bunch Wildlife Rehabilitation Newsletter -- October, 2003
Wild Bunch wishes to give you a brief update of our activities during the month of October. 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.
In October Erika received 1 raccoon. The refuge received one deer that had been caught in a fence. Sadly, its injuries were too extensive and the animal could not be saved.
Wild Bunch Refuge had the unusual job of caring for six grey foxes this season. These animals are by nature very shy, live in trees, and are therefore not seen very often. Of the six, two siblings, a male and female, were born by caesarean section after the mother had been hit by a car. As luck would have it, a local vet tech had seen the accident and, realizing the fox was pregnant, immediately cut the babies from the mother. After several months they were sent to us at the refuge. They were raised from infancy by humans and, because they had no other interaction with their own species, became imprinted on humans. These two are friendly to anyone and everyone and are very happy to interact in any form with humans. Not a good thing for a wild fox. There is a window of opportunity to turn around a wild animal that has been imprinted. In the case of foxes, they are very prone to imprinting and it is especially important that they interact with humans as little as possible. In this situation these two would be handed a death sentence if released. They have no predator instincts and would never be able to fend for themselves. After many discussions with other fox rehabilitators, the decision was made that they should go to a sanctuary, where they can live out their lives in safety. They now reside at the Maymount Park in Richmond where they are lovingly cared for.
We continue to receive calls regarding foxes with mange. This is an ongoing problem in the red fox population as their habitat is shrinking and infected dens are reused more often. It is not uncommon for a formerly cured fox to be re-infected with mange at a later date.
This month our True Stories site is featuring an article by Dinah Flynn about the highly unusual opossum. As one of the last marsupials on our continent, there are many fascinating features about this native Virginia species. Dinah has spent many years caring for these wonderful creatures and is always more than willing to share her knowledge and experience.
As always, we are grateful for your many generous donations. As the only wildlife refuge within a 50 mile range we are continually asked to take in greater numbers of a wider variety of species. We have constructed a new mammal and bird cage and are still in great need of more flight cages. Of utmost importance, in the future, is a pond. We take in countless numbers of waterfowl every year and, due to the lack of a large body of water, must rely on large pools to provide a minimum level of exercise necessary to their successful rehabilitation.
Please visit our website at http://www.wildbunchrehab.org 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 firstname.lastname@example.org. 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.