I came into this internship having a love for but little knowledge of Wisconsin wildlife. Having grown up in a rural area, I came to know and have a soft spot for the little animals that found their way into my front yard and my mom’s vegetable garden, even though their crimes were not always warmly welcomed! However, I now feel that I have gained more insight into how I can live in harmony with wildlife. Reading the book Wild Neighbors by the Humane Society of the United States and learning from my supervisors at WINC have taught me how I can prevent wildlife from becoming nuisances around my home. Admitting patients in WINC’s front office allowed me opportunities to hold and identify wildlife.
But as many of you know, school is just around the bend. My free time to bird-watch and observe fascinating Wisconsin wildlife will be extremely limited. The months will get busier, and my head will increasingly feel heavier with school assignments and other activities. I am going to make the assumption that many of you will also have busier schedules upon the arrival of fall. Who has the time or means to donate to wildlife when there is no room on our calendars and never-ending bills to pay?
However, for those of us who wish to remember the animals in the midst of our busy schedules, we can still pitch in and help! For example...
- Whether it is shopping at the grocery store, filling up gas in our cars, or renewing our magazine subscriptions, there are many ways in which we can provide for wildlife during our everyday routines. Please visit WINC’s website at www.helpingwildlife.org/newsevents/fundraisers.htm to read more about these easy and worthwhile opportunities.
- We can donate our extra veggies, pet foods, and/or other products that could benefit injured wildlife. View WINC’s wish list online at www.helpingwildlife.org/getinvolved/wishlist.htm.
- We should take precautions around our homes to ensure the safety of our families and nearby wildlife. We can find out what we can do to prevent any wildlife-related disasters from occurring by visiting the helpful links at www.helpingwildlife.org/wldlemergency/hoursloc.htm.
- If we do see animals that appear to be injured or in trouble, making a simple phone call to WINC or visiting its website to learn about the proper steps we should take could save lives!
- WINC is always in need of volunteers and interns throughout the year! Whether it is caring for the animals in person, working in the front office and reaching out the community, or educating the public on our wild neighbors, WINC always needs our help! View these awesome volunteer and internship opportunities at www.helpingwildlife.org/getinvolved/volunteer.htm.
I will miss my summer days with Waldo the Woodchuck, Daphne the Duck, and all of the other educational animals and patients at the Wildlife in Need Center. However, even though I will not be able to see them every day, I will always remember them and try my best to remain a part of WINC, whether it is contributing donations that fit inside my budget or volunteering my time at the center next summer. Where there is a will, there is a way!
I was only an intern at WINC this past summer, but in the end, I couldn’t help but feel like I became a part of a…family. And shouldn’t family members always support each other?
...Daphne the Duck says, "YES!"
Guest Blogger J.M.
NOTE: Do you have any suggestions for WINC’s upcoming blog posts? If so, please post them in your comment, and WINC may use them in the near future!