NSreg Erfani saw the flames grow bigger and bigger as they creeped towards Lake Tahoe. Wild animals Care, an animal shelter to help him run in South Lake Tahoe. He was afraid not only of himself, but of the raccoons, coyotes, owls, and porcupine zoos inside. Fortunately, the staff had a plan.
They sometimes guided the animals to transport crates in creative ways. “The owl’s treat is salmon. You know that owls go into cages to get salmon,” Elfani said. Being ready made all the difference. “Within an hour and a half, we evacuated all animals, all staff, and all volunteers from our facility.”
LTWC is one of many animal shelters where staff scrambled and fled after a Caldor fire, which currently consumes more than 213,000 acres, struck the Sierra Nevada Mountains.
LTWCs usually help find and receive injured and sick animals of all kinds, from bears to barn owls, and return to the wilderness. Sometimes that means mothering a baby coyote until they are ready to hunt on their own, or helping giant birds of prey regain their ability to fly.
Some animals live permanently, such as the fan’s favorite M, the broken-winged bald eagle that has been there since 2015. Pokey Pokey Pine captures the heart by eating corn in his signature waddle and camera-friendly chaw session.
Elfani says the fire is the first to endanger their mission.
“Our mission is rescue, rehabilitation, liberation,” he said. “But due to lack of food sources, animals cannot be released where there are burn scars.”
As wildfires worsen in the west, animals are increasingly blamed, and firefighters, a team of state-funded disaster veterinarians, and rescue centers like LTWC double their efforts to save anyone as much as possible. I am.
“There has always been this general idea that’they don’t get in the way’or can be managed if left alone, but we need to change that,” said Dr. Jamie Peyton of the University. CaliforniaDavis is part of a wildlife search and rescue team established in 2020 between the university and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (Wildlife Disaster Network). “Without human intervention, these animals will suffer and succumb not only to injuries, but also to the loss of food, water and habitat. Lack of wildlife that shares our home. It is our duty to provide the link. “
However, not all animals can be saved with special help.
A bear called Tender, who captured the hearts of the masses, was euthanized due to the severity of his injury this week after three leg burns in the Caldor fire. “That’s not the result we want, but sometimes it’s the only compassionate choice,” said Kirsten McIntyre, Chief Information Officer of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.
McIntyre said authorities received more reports of burned animals as the intensity and frequency of California fires increased. Large animals such as black bears and mountain lions are treated at agency facilities whenever possible, and small animals such as bobcats and skunks are taken to other wildlife rehabilitation centers.
Both wild and domesticated birds are often cared for by Michelle Hawkins, director of the California Raptor Center at the University of California, Davis and a board-certified specialist in bird medicine and surgery.
Hawkins says there is a misconception that birds can fly away from the incoming Inferno. “Many people believe that birds are the best in a fire,” she said. “But for the rest of your life, there are many bird species that live in one small area of the forest, and moving out of that area can be very stressful for them.”
Birds are also at risk while sleeping roosting. “If the fire blows through at night, which is a lot of activity we’ve seen here in California, those birds have no chance,” she said. “I saw it in California Condor last year. I lost 11 people in the fire last year.”
Already this year there was a more tragic story. This week I had to euthanize a hawk who was electrocuted by a wire that had fallen in a Dixie fire. The owl found by the firefighter was injured before getting help from the bird. “He held it in his arm and died in his arm,” she said. “They were trying to get rid of it. He was in tears.”
According to Hawkins, firefighters are often the first to find injured birds. Some birds cannot sing their wings and fly, while others suffer from malnutrition and smoke inhalation.
But for those found, veterinarians and certified care workers do nothing to restore them. Those who are injured and unable to release have a permanent home that helps educate the general public.
Hawkins, who also works with the Wildlife Disaster Network, said the bald eagle M, who had evacuated from the Lake Tahoe Wildlife Center, was taking care of the team and was well calm. “He currently has a pretty cool Eagle Suite at the California Raptor Center,” she said. “We installed him in our house and gave him a lot of perches and abundance.”
“He’s just a lovely bird,” she added, proving how important fire preparation was. The center’s evacuation plan was to ensure the safety of him and the staff who saved him. “Just because you weren’t on the road to fire now doesn’t mean you’re not in the future,” she said. “It’s very important to all of us and a lesson that we all have to keep in mind. For all the animals that care for us.”
How Tahoe’s shelter saved owls, coyotes and raccoons from wildfires | California
Source link How Tahoe’s shelter saved owls, coyotes and raccoons from wildfires | California