Teton Valley, Idaho ~ Teton Wildlife Rehabilitation Center hit record numbers for incident calls in July. Calls came in for fawns, raccoons, skunks, songbirds (including wrens, grosbeaks, robins, pine siskin, and a northern flicker), sandhill cranes, a nighthawk, a hummingbird, woodpeckers, ducks, and fox. TWRC hit maximum capacity for animal patients with their current number of wildlife enclosures in late June. The demand is so high that adding more enclosures is back on the list of immediate fundraising goals.
“Our enclosures are full and some of the injuries we have seen with our wildlife have been critical. With that, the need for a structure has been critical. With no paid full-time or part-time rehabbers on staff, we have relied solely on volunteers and board members with rehabilitation experience to take care of these sick and injured animals. With all of our volunteers also having full-time jobs and the increased demand for animals needing help, the next few months will decide if and to what extent we can continue to offer this vital service to our wildlife,” said Kristin Combs, TWRC rehabilitator, board member and executive director of Wyoming Wildlife Advocates.
TWRC is currently rehabilitating a male pine siskin with a broken coracoid, a grosbeak with a broken clavicle, a female pine siskin with neurological condition from a window strike, a female northern flicker with a broken coracoid from a window strike, nestlings that may be abandoned cedar waxwings, a third pine siskin abandoned nestling, and four skunks with a hopeful release by Labor Day for the ten raccoons. TWRC is also monitoring three orphaned house wrens. The mother was killed in a window strike.
“The number of calls has significantly increased since previous years, in my opinion, I don’t know if that’s due to the number of new residents and visitors but it’s pretty daunting,” said Renee Seidler, co-founder of TWRC and executive director Jackson Hole Wildlife Foundation.
Pine Siskins are songbirds that rely on conifer seeds and were one of the species hit hardest by salmonella infection this spring due to an irruption at residential bird feeders from a lack of natural food. There was a call from game and fish units across the country to take down bird feeders to help mitigate the widespread infection.
Northern Flickers, the species of woodpecker under TWRC’s care, are probably best known for having a similar call to the famed pileated woodpecker, spots and being rare eaters for the woodpecker family. Flickers eat mainly ants and beetles, and so you’ll often encounter them digging on the ground versus pecking at a tree.
Attached are photographs of two of the pine siskins. For more information please contact Tibby Plasse at 443-831-3366.
Teton Wildlife Rehabilitation Center‘s mission is to increase the chances of wildlife survival through rehabilitation and public education. We serve the greater Yellowstone ecosystem and Snake River Plain. Learn more at tetonwildlife.org.