Video micro-lectures. Today: Weathering & Erosion … when the speaker gets it wrong
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
Hey all, wanted to give you an update on the Coyote we have in the hospital. This little guy has made a lot of progress since mid-August and his condition has improved dramatically. He is recovering from a severe case of Sarcoptic Mange as well as a bacterial infection and malnutrition.
This coyote teen has been receiving a regiment of antibiotics and anti-parasitic drugs as well as nutritional support to help him get back to a healthy weight. As you can see from the picture his mange has mostly cleared and the fur on his face is re-growing nicely. He is much more active and alert and has regained his appetite.
He will be receiving his 3rd round of treatments this week and we are cautiously optimistic that he will be healthy enough to return to the wild by the middle of October. Thank you all for your concern and we will keep you posted on his progress.
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.
You wouldn’t want to meet this poor bugger in a back alley. This male adolescent coyote is suffering horribly from Sarcoptic Mange (mites). Mites are even worse than having really bad fleas. At least fleas stay on top of your skin. This Coyote was admitted by Woburn animal control and is suffering from a severe case. Dr. Rob says that the coyote also has a secondary bacterial infection. As you can see, he is very thin. This teen coyote is being treated with an antiparasite, antibiotics and plenty of good food to fatten him up. Although he looks awful, this regiment usually works. However, because of the severity of his mange, his prognosis is only fair. It will take a while, maybe six weeks or more, for him to recover. The Department of Fisheries and Wildlife will be placing an ear tag on the coyote to track him so that they can better understand the biology of these facsinating creatures. Our whole team is working hard so that this coyote can heal and be released to the wild.
”Like all the wildlife we help, this is the best biology lesson we can give to undergraduate students,” says Dr. Rob. First hand exposure (with appropriate supervision and safe gaurds) is the best way to teach and to connect learners to wildlife and to the out-of-doors. People protect what they know and love.
When the coyote arrived, interns from Drexel University, the University of Rhode Island and the University of California at San Diego all gathered round the surgery table and assisted Dr. Rob while he sedated the animal. With veterinary and veterinary technician supervision, undergraduates are feeding and providing medication. While they are working and in follow up seminars, all of our students are learning pathophysiology (what causes the disease), epidemiology (how it spreads) and pharmacology (what meds are used and why). They are also learning about coyote’s biology, anatomy, physiology and their natural history.
Sacropic Mange is a public health risk (but it is easily treated in most humans). Dogs that come into contact with wildlife (sticking their nose in a fox hole for example), can catch it. They can pass it on to us when we give them a hug or pat them. Most of us already know not to feed wildlife and to keep our distance. But it is a good reminder.
We will keep you updated on this guy.
Toads for Mount Auburn Cemetery
By Dr. Joe Martinez, Ed.D
Mount Auburn Cemetery ( www.mountauburn.org ) is renowned as both the first garden cemetery to be established in the United States (consecrated in 1831) and as a birding hotspot (this past Spring a pair of nesting great horned owls with their two fledglings created quite a stir). Besides birds, other wildlife inhabiting the cemetery includes coyotes, foxes, painted turtles and bullfrogs. This is especially impressive when one considers that its location lies within both Cambridge and Watertown.
Over the past two decades the Cemetery administration has been committed to improving wildlife habitat on the grounds through plantings of native groundcovers, bushes and trees with the intent of attracting more wildlife to the cemetery. More recently, the administration has agreed to a project, initiated through a citizen-scientist proposal by Joe Martinez (the New England Wildlife Center’s outreach educator) and Patrick Fairbairn (a member of the Watertown Conservation Commission), to attempt a repopulation of the grounds with American toads, gray treefrogs, and spring peepers. Each of these amphibian species was undoubtedly present in the cemetery at its inception; their disappearance from the cemetery is probably due to earlier landscaping practices that eliminated suitable habitat for the juveniles and adults.
The project is beginning with the American toad. Over a three year period (that began this year) a specified number of toad tadpoles will be collected each Spring from two locations near Boston and released into a vernal pool at the cemetery. One of those locations is the rainwater retention pool at the New England Wildlife Center. In the five years since its creation wood frogs, spring peepers, and American toads have migrated in from the adjacent wetlands to breed there. When approached by Joe, Dr. Greg Mertz graciously agreed to volunteer NEWC as one of the donor locations.
Moving any Massachusetts amphibian from one location to another with the intent of establishing a new population requires permission from the state Fish and Wildlife Department, therefore a Massachusetts Fish and Wildlife scientific collecting permit was obtained. In addition, permission was needed from the Watertown Conservation Commission (as the release site within the cemetery lies within Watertown).
This past May the first tadpoles were collected from the retention pond and transported to the cemetery. The tadpoles began metamorphosing in late June and have already been seen over twenty yards from the vernal pool. Should any survive into adulthood they will return to the vernal pool to breed. If all goes well, in 3-4 years, the melodic sound of trilling American toads will add yet another wildlife element for visitors to enjoy at Mount Auburn Cemetery!
The rainwater retention pool. This pool was created to collect rain run-off from the roof and parking lot of the Thomas E. Curtis Wildlife Hospital and Education Center and filter the water before it reaches a nearby wetland. Three species of amphibians now breed here.
American toad tadpoles from the rainwater retention pool. Most of them have hindlimbs.
A newly metamorphosed toad at the cemetery. It was found along the shore of the vernal pool in which it was released.
In a few years toads this size may be living at Mount Auburn Cemetery!
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.
|Reptomin turtle food||Whole frozen fish – 6 in.|
|Meat baby food in jars||Bottled water – personal size|
|Exact baby bird food||Gauze pads – 4 inch+|
|Latex or vinyl gloves||Dawn dishwashing soap|
|Electric heating pads||Plastic spray bottles|
|Batteries – 9 volt and AA||Hand sanitizer|
|Liquid bleach||Scrubby sponges|
|Copy paper||Tupperware with lids|
|Manila file folders – standard size||Vitamin B tablets|
|Pens||Refrigerated cookie dough|
|Sharpie markers||Fish food|
|Post It Notes||Ceramic heating lamps|
|Trash bags – 39 gallon||Food and water dishes for reptiles|
|Zip-Lock bags||UVB full spectrum bulbs|
|Paper towels||Kleenex tissue|
|Folding chairs||Paper plates|
|Fresh greens – no iceberg lettuce||Paper coffee cups – No Styrofoam|
|Peanuts and pecans in shells||Coffee|
|Towels – Large, no washcloths||Soda – cans|
|Cutlery & stirrers|
|Couches – good condition (no sofa-beds)|
|Animal carriers/cages – no rust please|
|Stop & Shop gift cards|
Thank you for thinking of us, but we cannot use newspapers, yogurt containers, comforters, fur coats, expired medicines and foods.
In addition we welcome pet caging, carriers, aquaria and other durable pet supplies. These will be sold in our Long Tail Store to help us care for wildlife and provide education programs.
Tonight on Channel 5, Dr. Rob shared helpful information about coyotes. In the clip, a woman explains to reporters that she was surrounded by coyotes in Hingham, MA while walking with her dog. Most likely, the coyotes were young ones out with their mom. The juveniles are out and curious, and mom is accompanying them. If you encounter a similar situation, make a lot of noise and thrown rocks and sticks. This will scare them away. As we continue to encroach on wildlife, encounters with them increase. We can all live together if we understand and respect what is wild.
Click here to watch:
Video of Black-Nosed Dace in the Pemigewasset River in Thornton, NH
Our very own Zak Mertz took up the challenge of climbing to our roof and reviewing some of our green technologies that help make us a sustainable building. Here is what he has to say about our solar voltaic cells which line the entirety of our rooftop.
Check out this video of baby raccoons just finishing a messy strawberry meal that Dr. Mertz filmed yesterday!
Who can’t help but fall in love? Native raccoons deserve our respect and admiration. Please share your raccoon stories with us, email us at email@example.com.
A pigeon is admitted after being scooped from the Charles River near Cambridge. He had reportedly been caught by a hawk, who accidentally dropped him into the water below. Luckily a good Samaritan at the Museum of Science saw the incident and fished him out before it was too late. When he arrived he was suffering from several puncture wounds and was quite disoriented to his surroundings. After about a week of cage rest and antibiotics he is ready to rejoin his friends and family in the wild, with instructions to avoid making any more friends with large talons.
Dr. Mertz believes the culprit to be one of the Peregrine Falcons who have made a home on the MIT campus this past year. They are among the fastest animals in the world and have an affinity for catching small birds, after all they did not receive the nickname ”Pigeon Hawk” for nothing.