New England Wildlife Center has a collaborative education program with the Norfolk Agricultural High School (Norfolk Aggie). Six years ago the program began as an initiative between the Center, Norfolk Agricultural High School, Mass Bay Community College and Massachusetts General Hospital. Each year the Center’s veterinarians and Norfolk Aggie teachers interview students enrolled in their animal science program who are interested in participating in this six week long hands-on internship. Students must submit resumes, interview and follow up with thank you letters. In May and June, students spend six weeks at the Center working inside our hospital alongside our undergraduate students, veterinary technicians and veterinarians.
According to Norfolk Agricultural teacher, Diane, the Center experience reinforces the information that is taught to them in the classroom, and teaches them things that can only be learned through hand-on experience. “The students love learning all the procedures that allow for the proper rehabilitation of animals and they also enjoy learning how to educate others about wildlife and their own roles in the process of keeping them safe.” she says “New England Wildlife Center’s philosophies and care of wildlife reflect the school’s beliefs.”
Norfolk Agricultural High School enjoys their experience here because of our openness toward education. The Center strives to see these students learn from their time here and educate others about what they’ve learned.
Posted by Student, Jack Banagis
Wildlife admission hours are 10-2 Tue – Fri. To save you time and angst, please, please, please – always call before coming in. We try to keep the web as up to date as possible, but a flood of wild animals can change our in take status quickly. I do realize that sometimes it is difficult to get through on our phone lines. We receive about 10,000 calls about wildlife this time of year. Thank you for your patience. We hope to see you soon, and thank you for caring for wildlife.
Helping a Hawk Fly Free Again –
Dr. Adamski works with New England Wildlife Center technicians and student interns to repair a red-tailed hawk’s feathers. This red-tail was admitted to the Center, unable to fly, with severely damaged feathers. The procedure they are performing to help this hawk fly again is called imping. Imping is the process of taking feathers from a deceased “donor bird” and epoxying them into the feather shafts of a live bird, who is in need of feather repair.
In order to complete this procedure, our staff and interns bought a live bamboo plant and cut strips from the woody portion of the plant. These strips were then dried over night and pressed between two pieces of construction paper with two heavy books placed on top. During the procedure, it was these bamboo strips that were inserted into the shaft of the donor feather and then into the shaft of the patient.
These feathers will help this red-tailed hawk fly again and will remain intact until she molts. In this case, the “donor” red-tail hawk arrived dead at New England Wildlife Center after being shot. The hawk in the video is the patient who is receiving the donated feathers. She is now doing very well and will be released.
Today Mom Opossum and her 10 babies were released back into the wild after a difficult go of it. Mom was admitted in late July after being found stuck inside of the wall of a Braintree home. Fortunately for mom opossum, she got stuck in the right house. The homeowner was able and willing to help. The mother opossum was thin and distressed when she arrived at New England Wildlife Center for emergency care. Initially mom was admitted with a few nursing babies. Within a few days, a total of 10 babies joined her at the Center. Each time we thought all the babies were found, more kept coming! It is always a great day when they return to the wild.
Here’s some pictures chronicling her stay with us and a first hand look at our full immersion internship program.
The case of the Golden Pheasant. A man looking out his backyard window spotted this domestic Golden Pheasant. The bird was perched feeding at his bird feeder. The man was confused that such a unique colored bird was passing by and eating in his backyard. He went out into his backyard and caught the bird, without any struggle. When the Golden Pheasant arrived at the New England Wildlife Center, we found that he was not injured, just lost. This healthy bird decided to take a trip but got lost and is now spending some cozy time at the Center. Emily Banagis