Big Brown Bats are one of the species of bat found in New England. They are nocturnal, and mostly live in forests or in structures such as barns and attics. They eat insects, and hunt using echolocation. This means that they produce ultrasonic sounds and then listen for how they bounce off their surroundings and return. This lets them construct a comprehensive image of their surroundings, including the tiny insects that they hunt. This guy came to us a little thin and malnourished, but we gave him plenty of food and rest, and he was just released a few days ago
This Cuban Anole was just in Odd Pet Vet for a check up. They are arboreal lizards, active during the daytime. When young they eat mostly insects, however as they age they start eating larger prey such as lizards, small mammals, and even birds. Although native to Cuba, they were introduced to South Florida in the 1950s. They spread rapidly, and are now a common sight.
Our little Great Horned Owl is doing well! He’s perfectly healthy now, and we’re in the process of placing him in a foster nest with a new owl family. This is a picture of him as we were about to feed him his dinner. He’s still a bit too young to eat on his own, so we have to hold him and help him with the food. Also, our raffle is still open until midnight tonight! Last day to get a chance at those wonderful concert tickets Anyone donating 10 dollars or more gets entered for a chance to win. Just head to our page at:
This is a Panther Chameleon that we saw recently in Odd Pet Vet with owner Richard. Panther Chameleons are native to certain sections of Madagascar, a tropical area. Males can get up to around 20 inches in length, and females grow generally to slightly more than half that. Like other Chameleons, they have specialized feet that are excellent at gripping tree branches, and can change their color depending on their mood and certain aspects of their environment like temperature.
This is a baby Great Horned Owl that we just admitted yesterday. He came in a little tired, dehydrated, and skinny, but otherwise fine.
I want to take the opportunity here to thank everyone who has already entered our raffle by donating! If you haven’t yet joined, the raffle is open for donations of 10 dollars and up until May 12th It’s incredibly helpful for us, as our baby season is in full swing, and it takes a lot of time and supplies to care for young animals like this guy.
He should be fine with fluids, time to rest, and plenty of food. Once he is completely healthy again, we will likely find a nest in this area that has owlets his age in it, as Great Horned Owl parents will readily foster babies even if they’re completely unrelated.
This is a juvenile wood duck that we just finished treating at NEWC Wood ducks live mostly in swampy, marshy, or heavily forested areas. Their nests can be found in trees either overlooking or in close proximity to a body of water. They mostly eat seeds, fruits, and insects, and while they primarily find food in the water, they will also sometimes go searching for acorns and nuts on land.
(Photo courtesy of Sue Cowan)
This is a spotted turtle that came in recently suffering from the inability to submerge. The most common cause for this is actually pneumonia, which creates debris in the lungs. This causes large bubbles of air to be trapped, making the turtle into something like a balloon. With these pockets of air making him float, this little guy then can’t swim down below the surface of the water. He got to us while he was still in decent shape though, so with some antibiotics and time to rest he should do fine
Happy Earth Day everyone! Today is a day to celebrate nature, wildlife, conservation, and really anything related to our green planet. In honor of Earth Day, I wanted to share one of New England Wildlife Center’s cool eco-friendly adaptations, our roof mounted solar panel array. We had it installed to help reduce our ecological footprint, and it helps provide us with the power we need to keep the lights on and the heating pads warm
We have a lot of awesome clients at Odd Pet Vet, but the two that travel the furthest distance to see Dr. Mertz have to be Debby and Ross Swiechowicz. They live in South Carolina and still travel up to Massachusetts to bring their reptiles for veterinary appointments. They have been coming to see Dr. Mertz for almost 10 years. Today Greg saw their lizards who were eating poorly and had dysecdysis, which is the medical term for when reptiles have problems shedding. They should be feeling better soon. The Odd Pet Vet is staffed by three veterinarians, which includes Dr. Lisa Trout and Dr. Rob Adamski, in addition to Dr. Mertz. We see patients 7 days a week. If you need an appointment for your exotic pets (rabbits, turtles, and lizards, among many others) please call us at 781 682 4878. We don’t see dogs or cats, but we do see pot belly pigs!
Last week, several baby raccoons were dropped off at NEWC as orphans after being found in someone’s basement. This is a sad but not uncommon situation, as many raccoons show up to us orphaned every year. In this case though, there was a happier ending than normal. The homeowner actually set humane traps around her house looking for the mother raccoon, and she managed to find her! A few days after the babies came in, the mother was brought in as well. We were cautious at first, because we couldn’t be sure that this was their mother and not a totally different raccoon, but when she was introduced to the babies in a carefully controlled and supervised environment she immediately took them in and began nursing them. Now that they have been reunited, we are going to give them a day or two of rest and food and then we will be releasing them back to the wild as a family
This is a young Rock Dove (another name for pigeon) that we have at NEWC right now. The yellow tufts all over his body are what’s left of his juvenile plumage. When they first hatch, their bodies are almost entirely covered with these yellow tufts, and it’s only as they mature that their purple, blue, black and grey coloration comes in. This guy will be staying with us until he matures a bit more, when he will be ready for release.
This is a picture of one of the woodcocks that we are currently rehabilitating. As you can see, he has a bandage wrapped around his wing and body. It serves to help stabilize a fracture that he has while it heals. Every year we see quite a lot of woodcocks at the beginning of spring, as they migrate directly through Boston, and have a tendency to hit the tall buildings there. We often see concussions and broken bones. This guy will hopefully be all better within the next few weeks, giving him plenty of time to get back on track for migration.
This is a young painted turtle that we had come in over the winter. We have quite a few turtles at the moment that we have been keeping until it warms up outside, but now that it’s above freezing at night they’re almost ready to go Turtles, unlike mammals, hatch from eggs. Also unlike mammals, they spend no time unable to take care of themselves, and in fact naturally receive no guidance or help from their parents at all. As soon as they hatch they begin to fend for themselves in the wild. This is why, although he’s quite small, this turtle is quite ready for a natural life without human care.
We’ve admitted our first baby raccoon of the season! He was found alone, hungry, and dehydrated out in the open, but other than that unharmed. With some basic nutritional support and fluid therapy he should be feeling fine again, although we will keep him until he is old enough to survive on his own in the wild
This is a Northern Saw-whet Owl that we admitted recently. She has a mild concussion, which is keeping her from flying, but other than that she’s totally fine. Northern Saw-whet Owls are one of the most common owl species in North America, living throughout the United States and into the Southern edges of Canada. They often roost in thick vegetation both in and near the trunks of tall trees. Their main prey item is mice, although they will also eat other small mammals and birds. This little one is already looking better than when she came in, and should be ready for release within the next couple of weeks.
This Canada Goose came in after being exposed to an oil spill. We clean oil off our patients using a basic mixture of Dawn dishwashing liquid and water. It’s important to let any animal that has been exposed to oil rest and de-stress before giving them a bath, as overly stressed animals can actually die during the process. Likewise, instead of doing one long bath for as long as it takes to get the oil off, we do a short bath every day for an extended period of time. This lets us get the animal clean and healthy again without making them overly stressed, and while giving them plenty of time to rest quietly between procedures. This guy is almost done, and will soon be fully ready for release
This is an Eastern Screech Owl that recently came in with a bacterial infection. As is often the case with wildlife, he was also malnourished and dehydrated due to the infection making him weak and unable to hunt. He has been responding well to antibiotics however, and should be ready to be released soon. Eastern Screech Owls are interesting in part due to their color. As you can see in this photo, one variety is a tawny brownish-red, however they can also be a mottled grey and white color. Both genders can be both colors, and although they are very distinct, both colors are excellent at camouflaging against tree bark.
It’s almost Spring again, and just like last year we’re starting our wildlife rehabilitation class! It begins Monday, April 6th, and runs once a week for 10 straight Mondays, ending Monday June 8th. The class costs 300 dollars total, lasts from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm, and will be taught by our veterinary team led by Dr. Mertz. During this course you will be taught the basics of wildlife rehabilitation, including both information and hands-on techniques. To get more information, to sign up for the course, or to get on the wait-list if we fill up, you can call us at (781) 682-4878. We are open from 10 AM to 4 PM 7 days a week.
Today I would like to say a huge thank you to the students of Frederick C. Murphy Elementary and Weymouth High School. Both schools held fundraisers that raised a ton of money for us at NEWC, and we are incredibly grateful! It’s because of awesome people like you that we are able to keep treating injured and orphaned wild animals I wanted to include this photo of intern Emma Weitzhandler feeding a baby squirrel in our Quiet Baby ward, to show one example of the work that you’re helping us do. At the end of a harsh winter and the beginning of baby season, your gift is going to be amazingly helpful. Thank you so much for your generosity!
Here at NEWC, we can always tell that Spring is on its way when we get our first baby squirrels, and this year’s baby squirrel day is today! These little guys came in this afternoon, a little dehydrated but otherwise doing fine. We warmed them up, gave them fluid and food, and now they’re settled in for the night. Squirrels have two main baby seasons, one in the spring and one in the fall. This is still a bit early, and it’s still quite cold, but soon there will be a whole bunch of young squirrels running around outside.