Want to Volunteer at Procyon Wildlife?

Our orphaned and injured baby wildlife needs your help.

NEW VOLUNTEERS APPLY HERE

RETURNING VOLUNTEERS APPLY HERE

INTERN APPLICATION FORM

It’s not too early in the year to consider becoming a Procyon wildlife volunteer, as our training sessions will start very soon. In the past, our baby season officially began on April 1st, however, because of the mild winters that we’ve been experiencing several years in a row, babies are being born earlier and earlier. For this reason, our season will begin on March 1st.

If interested in learning more about volunteering with us, please visit here or contact our volunteer coordinator, Linda Boag-Moores at 20****@pr*************.com">in**@pr*************.com.

During baby season wildlife babies need to be fed frequently during the day which is why our first shift goes from 6 am in the morning and our last shift ends at 11 pm at night).

 Please volunteer today. Animal care is rewarding. Help is in your hands.

Interested in Volunteering with Us?

Prince Charming

Sweet boy Prince Charming came in after being found by a road. Upon intake, he was having some trouble breathing. This can be common when young fox kits are experiencing stress. No obvious wounds were present so he was monitored the first day in care.

His condition became worse the next day and he was rushed to receive veterinary care. After receiving X-rays, huge trauma was seen to his tiny little body. Prince Charming was undoubtedly hit by a vehicle. He had a collapsed lung, with air in his chest cavity and bleeding in his lungs.

National Wildlife Centre was able to quickly perform life-saving procedures to remove the air and fluid, and kept him overnight for observation. His prognosis was extremely guarded.

Ten days later on re-check exam, he was a different fox! X-rays are clear, barely indicating he was ever hit by a car.

He will be ready to be put into one of our outdoor fox enclosures soon. If you would to help with Prince Charming’s Care, please visit: https://www.procyonwildlife.com/donations/fox-sponsorship-program/

 Spring has Sprung

Article and images by Jen Howard

Read time: 3 minutes

Babies everywhere, turtles on the move, fawns coming into the world, and we are right in the middle of baby season.  Let me tell you how you can make it work so that we can all let moms, and dads depending on species, care for their little ones. It really isn’t that hard. Rehabilitation Centres everywhere are maxed out, some unable to admit more animals. We are one. Our volunteers are worn thin and to be honest, if we all work together, we can avoid babies being separated from their parents. Of course, injured or sick animals are a different story and we do our utmost to have some space available for them. 

Baby bunnies are being found by people’s dogs and cats. Then the worried rescuers call us wanting us to take them in, but most often their mothers are still there, so no, we can not take them in. Your job now is to get a laundry basket and cut an opening for mom to get in and out. She comes at dusk and dawn to feed her babies. Keep cats in, (they will get over it) and take dogs out on leash only. It’s not a long haul to save these innocent lives. Baby bunnies grow fast so at three weeks they are actually old enough to leave the nest and be on their own. Remember these are wild animals. Please do not touch them, baby bunnies and fawns can die of capture myopathy (stress). They do not want to be touched.

Fawns are being born now and you must also be mindful of the fact moms leave them curled up in what they think is a safe place.  She will come back and forth to feed, but will stay away to keep her baby safe from wild predators. Fawns and bunnies have no scent.

A fawn in distress will have curling ears due to dehydration, will look emaciated from lack of food and may be week and wandering, also crying non stop. I have included a photo. Please refer here for additional information: https://www.procyonwildlife.com/2024/05/26/signs-a-fawn-is-in-distress/

The Turtle nesting season is in full swing. From small turtles to great big old snappers. Please, only if its safe for you, if they are crossing a road help them out. Always in direction they are going. NEVER pick them up by their tail, that’s connected to their spine and it will cause severe damage to their vertebral column. For a Big snapper, grab the shell near back with one hand, slip other hand right under the plastron, (bottom shell).  Lift them across, they can not bite you in this position. Always wear gloves. Please always check a turtle if it has been hit. Always. They may be alive; a turtle can endure a hefty injury and still live.  If it has passed on, it may have viable eggs that can be extracted by the professionals and incubated, thus saving many lives. Take it in and call Ontario Turtle Conservation Centre at 705-741-5000.

For Baby birds call Shades of Hope 705-437-4654, taking them straight there is much less stress than us having to transfer. We are too busy to take baby birds. 

Always remember, if we accept an animal from you, when you transfer them in your vehicle, PLEASE, NO NOISE. A quiet ride is critical for their survival and is less stressful. If you use tape to secure a box, make sure you put a piece of paper between tape and box so the tape is not accessible to an animal inside.  And don’t forget the air holes.

Carrying an emergency wildlife kit in your car is a great idea. A Rubbermaid tote with holes in lid and sides at the top near rim. Latex gloves, work gloves, hand sanitizer, book and pen so you can write down location and about the incident. Always sanitize tote well between animals. Secure injured animal then call Procyon at: 905-729-0033. Leave one message and we will get back to you. Keep quiet and warm, NO food or water.

Let’s work together and save our precious wildlife!

Jen Howard

Animal Updates May 2024

Article and images by Jen Howard

Read time: 3 minutes

Tory the Red Fox

Tory has gone home to be free again. She was admitted to the centre to receive treatment for a severe case of mange. We secured a ride for her for her long journey home. She was ready to go.  The best outcome is when we see these animals returned to the wild to live as nature intended.

Porcupine

Although this porcupine was hit by a car and left to die, he was still full of spunk upon arrival at the centre.

He was found in the middle of the road in Wiarton, which is within the furthest reaches of our admitting range. A lady picked him up and called us. While we were trying to arrange a ride, this kindhearted lady decided to bring him in herself.  

Good news -after a vet check he is feeling much better and eating well despite a broken rear leg, open wound and quills missing on his back and an injured front leg. He also lost his upper front teeth with the impact. The quills and teeth will grow back as a porcupine’s teeth never stop growing. This is why it’s so important they do their chewing. He will be with us for a while but we believe his prognosis is good for a full recovery.

Fox kits

All five fox kits at the centre have graduated to several of our outdoor enclosures where they romp and play, hiding under brush piles provided for them and learning to be foxes.  Their appetites are healthy. Great thing is they don’t like us – which means they will not become habituated to humans. Fear of man is key to the survival of all wildlife.

Adult Weasel

Well, there were two of us with cameras to document this little guy’s release. But he wasted no time in running like the wind to freedom.  It was quite humorous as we both looked at each and asked if the other got any photos. Nope. Oh well, he was faster than us for sure. So, no release shots but I have a before release shot. One little weasel who was extremely happy to go home. And wasted no time getting out there. Be free little one, happy life.

Fawns are starting to come to the centre, either injured or orphaned. Bunnies and some raccoons have or will be released soon.

We also have admitted some opossum babies who were orphaned or fell off mom but are doing well. If you find a little opossum please secure it and call us at 905-729-0033. They will not survive on their own without their mom. They are so adorable, but so vulnerable if alone. 

Did you know? Opossums are North America’s only marsupial and that they eat can eat up to 4,000 ticks in one week!

To learn more about opossums, check out an earlier article of ours here: https://www.procyonwildlife.com/2021/06/17/infant-opossums/

Life at the centre is never dull and always busy. Try the best you can to keep families together so we can keep space for those animals who are in real need due to illness or injury. 

Allow wildlife parents to raise their babies and enjoy the experience. At a distance of course and no interaction or feeding on your part. Wild animals are great parents. Let’s all learn to work together to coexist. Please keep cats indoors. They are responsible for over 1 million wildlife baby and small animal deaths a year and it is estimated that cats kill 2.5 billion birds annually – one of the leading causes of bird deaths. And remember, if let outside, your cat is at risk of becoming prey.

A great start to wildlife awareness is to teach young children to respect wildlife, watch from a distance, and to never approach. Procyon Wildlife provides educational programs to teach the young and all about wildlife. If your children’s school or institution would like to learn more about our Education Program, download our Procyon Wildlife Education Brochure or contact us at in**@pr*************.com. Kids should always get an adult if they see a wild animal is in distress; wildlife in pain and fear may lash out or even bite. Call for us for advice at 905-729-0033 and or visit our resource here: https://www.procyonwildlife.com/what-to-do-if-you-find-wildlife-in-distress/

Watch for next month’s update on all the wildlife in our care at the centre.

Jen Howard

To sponsor a wild animal, visit: https://www.procyonwildlife.com/donations/general-donation-toward-care-of-an-animal/

HELP is in our hands… it’s in ALL OUR HANDS!

Signs a Fawn is in Distress

Fawn season has begun. Procyon Wildlife is currently caring for three orphaned fawns. Though one was attacked by a coyote and needed intake for medical treatment, the other two were “true orphans.” How do we know?

When a fawn is found, it is extremely important not to intervene unless there are signs that this animal is a true orphan.

Signs are:
Wandering and crying
Curled ears (exhibited in photo above of our latest intake)
Flies, fleas, tics, flystrike or maggots
Diarrhea on back end

A healthy and happy baby fawn will stay perfectly still and silent, contently waiting for their mother to return. Does leave their young for many hours during the day, as the young fawns are unable to walk long distances. Leaving them alone protects them from predation that the mother attracts.

If you come across a fawn, PLEASE DO NOT TOUCH IT MOVE IT OR FEED IT! If you see a fawn exhibiting any of the above signs, please contact a wildlife rehabilitation for help.

Animal Updates April 2024

Article and photos by Jen Howard

Read Time: Three Minutes

Marc

Our first little fox kit of the year arrived April 19th. He was found all alone behind a school. A young boy picked him up and the next day he was brought to the Centre. He was dehydrated and had early signs of mange. Hydrated and medicated for the mange, he still didn’t want to eat. We are not mom. With time and patience Crystal finally got him to eat. He is now enjoying his tasty nutritious slurries. As fox kits need company, he cried a lot, which is heart breaking to hear.

Diva

Another little fox kit had been attacked by a dog and had a fractured jaw. As young animals with growing bones heal fast, she was soon on the mend and doing very well. But she was also crying from loneliness. I woke up to a beautiful day, kind of rare these days, so spur of the moment I headed up.  Upon arrival my special little passenger was awaiting me. On arrival at Procyon our new little girl Diva was given a topical medication to protect her from getting mange.

The same day Marc arrived we had an emergency come in. This time it was a beautiful big male opossum. He was found in distress on a property he frequented. They saw him all the time, and since he was out in the day they realized he was in trouble. He had a wound on his back and he was so cold he was barely moving. They acted immediately and brought him in. We warmed him up slowly and tended to his wounds. We have no idea what happened to this poor gentle soul. He is an old opossum, and ever so sweet. A few days later his wounds look good. He is healing well and is eating well also. Sometimes with a little help from our volunteers we get another story that totally warms one’s heart. And a huge thank you to the couple who brought him in. 

Another first for us came in recently. This one is a Red Bat. He was seen hanging low on a building for over 30 hours. They brought him in to be safe as the weather was crazy. He is a migratory bat and may have been exhausted from his flight with very few insects out there yet. He is eating his mealworms and super worms well and gaining some weight. Hopefully he will be ready for release very soon to get back on his journey. 

Our first baby skunk. Found all alone, no den could be found nearby, no siblings, so he was brought in. Cute little stinker really wanted to give us a squirt. LOL. That’s okay baby it’s a stressful adventure. All good, you’re still cute as a button.

Babies are booming and keeping us busy, Tis the season.

Jen Howard

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