Friday, August 1, 2008

Mayhem in the garage

Lindsey hollered at me from the garage yesterday afternoon.

"Mom, get out here NOW!"

"Why? What's the matter," I said. I lolly gagged some more, and she yelled even more urgently.


So I ran out to the garage, and she pointed toward a corner. "The cats got a bird, and it's still alive!"

In a corner, behind the two pots of dying purple loosestrife, huddled a white-winged dove. "Go get a shoebox, Lindsey," I said as I scooped up the bird. She was wounded, I could see. Lindsey ran back with a box. I gently set the bird inside and set the lid on top. Then I carried the box to our bedroom and set it on the floor. I'd let it recuperate and calm down inside the dark box.

Throughout the rest of the afternoon, I quietly opened the box and peeked inside. It was still alive! I thought for sure it might not make it. After supper, James corralled the cats (NO MORE CATS AFTER THESE!), and I carried the box across the street. I opened the lid, and the nervous bird peered at the tree branches. Then it tried to fly, only to flutter to the ground. James walked over. I cried.

"Would you like to take it to Wildlife Rescue?" he offered. I nodded. Honestly, I must confess, I thought Why? It's just another white wing. But it deserved a chance. So I called the hotline, and a young woman answered.

After a few questions about the bird's injuries and conditions, she said, "Yes, we'd be glad to have the bird!" Half an hour later, we presented the box to staff at Wildlife Rescue, filled out a form, and made a donation, too. That place is amazing, and we're glad to help support it.

As we walked back to our car, we looked around and saw rabbits, geese, and ducks freely roaming. In pens, a pot-bellied pig, white-tailed buck, goats, and so many more animals happily grazed.

Wildlife Rescue & Rehabilitation Inc. is located on 187 acres near Kendalia and was founded in 1977 in San Antonio by Lynn Cuny. I met Lynn on a freelance assignment in the 1990s when her facility was located near Boerne. According to her Website, "Wildlife Rescue & Rehabilitation is widely recognized as a superior rehabilitation and sanctuary facility and is accredited by The Association of Sanctuaries (TAOS). It provides a permanent home for a variety of mammals (e.g., wolves, bears, big cats, and primates) and non-indigenous birds and reptiles. Every year, over 5,000 animals are brought to WRR, mostly from surrounding areas, but many from around the country; the majority of these were rehabilitated and released or given permanent sanctuary."

Their 24-hour hotline number: (830) 336-2725.

P.S. I'm going to call in a few days and check on our white wing.

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