Wildlife rehabilitation videos
January 7, 2008 12:11 AM   Subscribe

Wildlife rehabilitators take care of wounded or orphaned animals, nursing them back to health and preparing them for a life back in the wild. This leads to a lot of cute baby animal videos. (Roll over for descriptions.)

On a more serious note, if you find an injured or orphaned animal, here are a collection of tips to follow; you can find a wildlife rehabilitator near you by searching here.
posted by Upton O'Good (14 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Incredibly adorable videos- I particularly liked the skunk babies!
posted by arnicae at 1:06 AM on January 7, 2008

Absolutely great, thanks.
posted by nicolin at 1:30 AM on January 7, 2008

The skunks! Stomping in the bathtub! That is extremely cute. As was the squirrel trying to hide his nut in the towel. And my life will not be complete until I have a couple of baby raccoons playing in a tub nearby.
posted by thehmsbeagle at 1:52 AM on January 7, 2008

There really ought to be a 24 hour Baby Animal Channel. Just footage of baby animals doing baby animal things*, all day and all night. Delightful and soul soothing for all.

*Except getting eaten.
posted by louche mustachio at 2:23 AM on January 7, 2008 [1 favorite]

The stomping baby skunks were the best. My rabbit will stomp like that sometimes, but I have no idea why.
posted by MaryDellamorte at 6:14 AM on January 7, 2008

Thanks, that was awesome!
posted by yodelingisfun at 9:38 AM on January 7, 2008

MaryDellamorte: it's supposed to be a warning sign, or a sign of annoyance, but I think my bunny would also just thump for practice. Either than or there was something he found profoundly annoying under our bed. Here's a little rabbit communication primer.

Thanks for the post, UOG- I really liked the baby skunks. Raccoons were very cute too, but as we have three living directly under our apartment, I'm a little less enthusiastic as they tend to smash all my plants in the garden (what's up with that?) and fill my little fountain with dirt. They also smell pretty bad.
posted by oneirodynia at 9:54 AM on January 7, 2008

I am convinced that the skin on the paws of baby raccoons is the softest material known to man. It makes velvet look like 40grit sandpaper.

And I still don't understand how people can dislike opossums. Look how happy he is eating that berry, that's just awesome.
posted by quin at 10:23 AM on January 7, 2008

At my parents' old house, I had planted a patch of alpine strawberries. These don't have runners, and the berries are very small. A local oppossum found the patch and went through there every night. I saw him once or twice in the morning, he looked so happy amongst his little field of berries. Whenever I see an oppossum, that's what I think of.
posted by Salmonberry at 10:50 AM on January 7, 2008

I loved the peregrine-release video (the last link), although I don't think you can call peregrines "cute" - more like "angry! will bite your face off!". And I don't like that the rehabbers wear the big gloves, though they're probably required to by their organization. The banders who volunteer for the raptor organization that I also volunteer for (though not as a bander) are required to handle to the birds bare-handed, to prevent any potential injury to the bird. They all proudly carry scars from being bitten or footed.

There's cool footage here of some rehabbed redtails (they got oiled in the recent spill in the SF Bay) being released - the rehabbers wear gloves, but the guy who runs our banding program doesn't, and at one point, one of the RTHAs turns its head and bites Buzz on the hand. Heh.

My vote for most severely cute in the roundup goes to the baby squirrel hiding a nut in his towel.
posted by rtha at 11:10 AM on January 7, 2008

I found a fledgling peregrine on the ground outside my work one time. I took him home in a small cardboard box, put it in the bathroom, and went to go pick up my boyfriend at the train station; a trip on which my dog, SodaPop , accompanied me. When we came back, Soda trotted down the hall, into the bedroom, where I saw her stop cold. "Oh shit, the bird!" I said. "Bird?" said my boyfriend. I ran into the bedroom where Soda and the little peregrine were engaged in a western standoff, scooped up the bird, and went to put him gently in the box. I couldn't resist putting my finger on the bottom of his (relatively speaking) amazingly large foot, at which time he clamped down instantly, sinking his small, yet oh-so-FUCKING-SHARP talons into my finger. I totally understand why they wear those big gloves around those tiny birds.

The next morning we drove him to a raptor rehab near Morgan Hill. They were really surprised I had found him in an urban area, and said he'd be flying in a few weeks.
posted by oneirodynia at 7:14 PM on January 7, 2008

My house has become the "go to" place for all sorts of critters of late. There's been a massive amount of development, and a lot of the prairie lands are being plowed under for McMansions. Why the animals have all chosen a yard with a 90 pound dog and a small child confuses me, and yet, there it is. Currently, I have a small family of possums, one of the babies has been spotted hanging upside down in the willow trees by the pond. We have voles (I think it's voles...don't seem big enough to be moles) that have built a warren under the terrazzo patio, an egret pair nesting by the pond, about 40 ducks who are neighborhood ducks, but all line up outside my fence to sleep, the ducklings will come in and sleep in the dog house...it's apparently the only safe place to escape the male ducks who try to kill them, and a handful of strange little birds, frogs, toads, snakes and spiders. One spider on my back window is bigger than my hand...it's not poisonous, so I leave it alone, but I swear to you that thing is big enough to eat a bird. That said, there are no squirrels or raccoons...which is the strangest thing.

I need to set up cameras outside and capture the wilds of the suburban outback.
posted by dejah420 at 7:33 PM on January 7, 2008

Peregrines used to be known as big-footed falcons - you, oneirodynia, personally know why! The guy who runs our banding program says the gloves keep you from feeling how tightly you're holding the bird, and it's too easy to break a bird's leg, or flight feathers, if you wear them while handling birds. Clearly, the rehabbers have a different take.

I'm surprised that the Morgan Hill rehabbers were surprised about where you found the peregrine - they love cities. Cities, to them, are just a great set of cliffs (buildings) and food (pigeons). There's at least one nesting pair in San Francisco, and at least one in San Jose (and lots of others across the state, and the country). Photos from the nest cams can be found here.

dejah420, that is very cool (although sad that they're moving in on you because they've lost their territory). Set up a webcam, and I'll definitely watch!
posted by rtha at 7:47 PM on January 7, 2008

The guy who runs our banding program says the gloves keep you from feeling how tightly you're holding the bird, and it's too easy to break a bird's leg, or flight feathers, if you wear them while handling birds.

That makes sense, actually.

I'm surprised that the Morgan Hill rehabbers were surprised about where you found the peregrine - they love cities.

This was many years ago, so maybe it had more to do that I was working on a school campus at the time? I'm not sure now what exactly was so surprising about it, because I've definitely seen peregrines in San Francisco...
posted by oneirodynia at 10:08 PM on January 7, 2008

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