North East Wildlife Animal Rehabilitation Coalition is a 501(c)3, non-profit organization. We are a group of licensed wildlife rehabilitators, and these are the tales of the injured and orphaned animals we care for until they are able to be released back into the wild.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Belle and kids.

Here we have Belle and the kids again. Wow, they are growing fast! I can't believe how big they are. Bella's eyes are open and although she can't see well yet, she turned and looked right at me when I flashed the flash light in there. It was obviously the bright light that caught her attention, but I got a great peek at her as she stared in my direction!

Here you can see a little head on each side of mamma's leg.........

.........and a little head on the far right and far left. Belle's face is looking better also. It's amazing how fast they can heal even without our intervention.

Good girl're being such a great mamma!

Friday, April 25, 2008

The new kid & a few of the old!

Well here he is! This is Tosser. Someone tossed him out of a car window. A woman was kind enough to pick up the little guy and take him to a vet, eventually ending up in my hands. Aside from a little bump on his head, he is in great shape and eating like a pig.

As you can see, he is a very blond boy also! Couldn't call him Blondie though, already had a Blondie! He was Belle's and Ringer's brother as a matter of fact. There will never be another Blondie.

OK lady! I know I'm very cute, but that's enough with the pictures!! Could ya feed me now!!

Silly was out last night. She's definitely a mom! Her nipples are HUGE! Came for a quick visit and a little play with me then on her way she went.

Paleface was out there the same time. She snuck up on me, gave me a gentle tug on my coat as if to say "Here I am, May I have a treat please!" She looks great.

Red wasn't out when I was out there, but she made sure to say Hi and smile for the camera to let me know she is fine!

Ringer is still making her usual daily visits also. Belle and the babies are doing great. Had some sightings of Feisty and Smokey on the coon cam too. Haven't seen Dandy at all. But I'm pretty sure she was pregnant when I released her again, so if she has kits somewhere I wouldn't expect to see her for a while.

The overwinters are READY TO GO! We're just waiting on Popeye to be all set so we can send them all out together. Soon!!!!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

We have eyes open!!

Here is the proud mama yesterday. You can see the wound on the left side of her face here. One of her injuries during the attack on her den. It may have been a small abscess that finally popped or she may just have rubbed the scabs off. Just one of the injuries I am keeping an eye on.

AND!!!!! Bella has her eyes opened! Not in this picture of course, but I got a peek at them! That is Bella's face we see and Macy's butt right in front of that. She is plugged onto mom at the moment while Bella just naps.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

The gang....updates!

Popeye is feeling much better now! The infection that had him under the weather has cleared up and he's almost a happy coon again! As soon as the stitches come out and he can go back with his siblings for release he will be thrilled!

He's got a little mat hanging off his nose. Some hair got caked on and tangled in the sutures so it formed this little mat that I am not going to fiddle with...I don't want to pull anything open. It will come off soon enough, either when the scab falls off or we take the sutures out. It's not causing a problem but it sure is silly to look at!

Ringer is still making her usual daytime visits to eat. Every now and then when I am around during her window of arrival, I am able to visit her in person. What a great girl she is!

Belle and the babies, Bella and Macy are doing great! The happy mom is taking such great care of the little ones! The rest of the gang remains elusive. Now that I have gone from the overnight shift to the day shifts at work, I'm just not out and about around 2-3am when they all seem to flock in. If not for the coon cam, I would be going absolutely crazy not being able to keep my eyes on them! I'm hoping I'll get a chance for a late night/early morning visit coming up on one of my days off.

Things are getting crazy around here. Lots of baby squirrels coming in now. Laurie just ended up with 4 new baby coons so I imagine they are going to start flooding in soon!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Belle & Ringer she is, the happy mom, Belle. It's tough getting good pics. She is inside and the camera has trouble focusing in the low light. Here she puts herself between me and babies.

Finally she opens up a little and gives me a peek! Two squirming little bodies under there although it's hard to tell!

You can just kind of make out the little tail and feet sticking out under her leg and chin! What a beautiful sight!

Here is her sister, Ringer coming for her daily visit from across the water...taking caution to avoid the Canadian geese in the area I might add. She's just a little girl like her sister and no match for the geese. Ringer is like my Red from my first release a couple years ago....she's the affectionate one from that group that loves to visit and play with mom.

Finally at the feeding station getting some treats and saying Hi Mom! She loves avocado and I would always bring her some for our regular daytime visits last year too. Looks like I'll have to stock up again. Isn't she a beauty!

The New Family & other sightings.

I'm happy to report Belle and her new family are doing great. She is taking VERY good care of her 2 new babies. I got a quick peek at Bella and Macy before she scooped them up and turned them away from my view, putting herself between myself and them.

Popeye is doing OK. He's a little under the weather, apparently due to a slight infection from his injury. He is now on antibiotics and should be feeling better soon. He certainly has no problem avoiding us when he know it's time for his shot though! Plenty of energy then!

The coon cam has been showing a regular visitor to the feeding station around 1:30 the past few afternoons. I popped out back this afternoon to check it out. I had a feeling it was my girl Ringer. She did this last year when she had babies....showed up most afternoons around 3pm. Then showed up with her 3 kits in tow one afternoon.

Sure enough I'm standing out there and she appears like clockwork from the woods across the pond. She came right over when I called her and had her favorite treat waiting for her......some yummy avocado! Ringer also happens to be Belle's sister. We had a little visit and I got some good pics. I'll post them when I get a chance to download them! She looks great and I have no doubt she'll take good care of her kits wherever they are!

Red was out as usual last night running around like a maniac. Ran into her sister Silly too! I thought it was Red at first...they look identical except for their tail tips. They are even moulting the same. I couldn't figure out why she walked up to me, gave me a quick sniff hello, then continued on into the bushes! She practically ignored me! Huh! Then I saw movement out of the corner of my eye and turned just in time for Red's usual assault....jumping all over me wanting to play! Ha ha She's such a love!

The rest of the gang still eludes me in person. They are not usually out until 2 or 3am on the coon cam! I am able to discern a few individuals out though and am confident of Feisty, Smokey, Sarge, Lexi and Goofball sightings.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

The good that came out of this tragedy.

I am happy to announce that Belle is now the proud mom of 2 newly adopted babies. Raccoons are such good mothers, and Belle has proved to be the epitome of that!

I have her in due to her injuries. I brought Baby Bella out to the pen to see how she would react. All Belle had to do was hear a baby cry and she immediately tried getting to her. Having never attempted (or even had the opportunity) to try adopting out orphans to another raccoon mom, I was very hesitant to try for fear of her harming the strange baby. So after much contemplation and a lot of discussion and advice from some fellow rehabbers (thank you so much Dee & Matzo for your guidance!!!!!!!), and after seeing Belle's positive reaction to the sound of Bella crying, I decide to try it.

I anxiously brought Bella out in a pile of fleece blankets. I was going to leave her on the floor and wait and see how Belle reacted. Best case scenario she would either take the baby or just ignore her. Well I no sooner put that precious package on the floor of the pen and Belle was out of the den box, right to Bella. She gently picked her up, carried her to the den box and began showering her with motherly love! I cannot begin to describe what a beautiful sight it was, and it was topped only by her doing the exact same thing with a second single orphan my friend Laurie was fostering. She did so well with Bella that I went and picked up baby Macy who is about the same age as Bella (both are between 2-3.5 weeks old) and we went through the same routine. Our new family is happily encamped in their new from predators and worry.

So although I will miss spending time with my little Bella, I am so happy that Belle's grief could be replaced with new babies to love and care for. I won't be there to see Bella's eyes open, or record her growth each day with weights and get cute pictures as she grows....but she's with the BEST mother she could possibly have and I'll still be able to keep track of her. It just won't be as up close and personal as before.

So now I'll hope all goes well with our new family. They will be staying here until the time comes when the babies are old enough for mom to start looking for a new den. At that time the release door will be opened to allow Belle to come and go and move her family as she see's fit.

A Tragic Day for Belle

It is with a VERY heavy heart that I tell you that once again, Belle's babies were attacked and killed. I discovered it yesterday afternoon. This time all 3 kits were killed and Belle is pretty beat up. She obviously put up a good fight, but she's such a little girl and whatever it was got the better of her. I had to bring her in to keep an eye on her. Her eye is a little swollen, she's not using her right front leg and she's pretty scratched up. Nothing life threatening, but in no condition to be out there defenseless right now with her limited mobility.

I'm guessing a rogue male coon. The bodies were mutilated and left there. A fisher would take them with it. Although if Belle battled with it, maybe it didn't have a chance to take them. Who knows, either way I'm miserable! I'll never put a den box back up's obviously not safe for moms to have their kits in and I don't want to invite future moms to use it. It's not right at the feeding station, but it's apparently close enough to attract unsavory company.

We also discovered Popeye with a nose injury. Looks like someone gave him a good bite and ripped the front of his nose apart. Poor guy. It looked awful, but he was brought to the vet and he stitched him up like new! It looks great and he should heal up well.

These are some pics of his ordeal. He was such a good boy at the vet also. He let everyone do their thing without a hassle.

We got to wondering if maybe whatever got Belle's babies may have paid a visit to the release cage and managed to get him through the cage. The release cage is chain link....easy enough for a nose to poke through and something to grab it. For now, the poor guy has his own suite at Hotel Raccoon and he seems to be enjoying his privacy! All the treats and attention don't seem to bother him either! haha

Saturday, April 12, 2008

And Belle too!

I forgot to mention! Went out around 4pm today to check the coon cam etc. Belle was out in the tree near her den box lounging high up in the branches watching me do my thing. Until the downpour and thunder and lightning drove her inside, that is! The downpour that suddenly had to start just when I had to go outside to take care of the coonies.....and stopped when I was finished and back in the house of course!

Red, Lexi, Sarge, Dandy & fun in the rain.

I cannot be positive due to the quality of the pics, but I'm pretty sure this was Dandy on the right last night. The face is a little pug-like. She's obviously doing well since her surgery and hanging with the old gang again! Thank goodness!

All the rain we got in the early morning hours didn't put a damper on things for the gang. They are totally unfazed by it as they lounge and eat! I wish they would all come out earlier though! Most of them show up in the wee hours of the morning from like 2am on. It doesn't make it easy for me to run into them at all!

Ran into Red last night also. She's up to her old crazy ways! She was running around like a maniac last night wanting to play with me. The foot is obviously not slowing her down at all any more!

Lexi dropped in for a visit too! I haven't seen her in a while....she looks great! She's a little timid and would run to me, then dart off when she heard all the racket Red was making jumping around. I got a quick hello, she got a quick scratch under the chin and off she went to get away from the ruckus.

Shortly after Lexi left Sarge showed up. It looks like at some point he had gotten a nasty wound on his right ankle and heel. Looks like someone may have gotten the better of him in a scuffle. The leg was still a little swollen, but the wounds were already healing and granulating in. It looked good and is healing very well, plus he is using the leg with no problem. His appetite and condition are great so I let him be. I think he probably had a good sized abscess at one point that went through it's usual progression and all is now on the mend. I am always amazed at their tolerance to pain and their natural abilities to heal really well without our interference when need be.

Baby Bella is up to 175 grams and doing great. I am expecting her eyes to start to open within the coming week and then she'll start to really grow fast!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Growing like a weed!

Baby Bella is growing fast! She's up to 158 grams and cute as ever! I can't wait until her eyes open. She's got such long fur for a little girl too....she's quite fluffy.

I ended up releasing Red last night. Her foot was so much better and she was able to run around like a maniac trying to play with me when I went in to see her. Since we are going to have such nice weather it was a good time for it. I'm sure I'll be running in to her again!

Belle was hanging out early last evening in the tree above her den box. Taking a much needed break from her kids I imagine since the weather was mild! She watched Laurie and I in the pen with the overwinters for a few minutes before climbing back down into her den box.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Red, Belle & some silly pics.

Red is doing great...enjoying her star treatment at the Ritz!! Breakfast in bed and all! The swelling is going down, her foot is getting better and I'll probably send her out soon. Since she's not anxious to leave and I'm in no hurry to boot her I'll just give it some time for the swelling to go down more and let it heal a little longer so there is less chance of her re-injuring it too quickly.

Belle is taking good care of her babies. She pops out during the day to eat so she can stay with them at night when all the other coonies are out and about. I got a brief glimpse of her when she popped her head out today to check me out when I was putting the coon cam back at the feeding station. She was pretty quick though and all I got was part of her head before she ducked right back inside to her babies.

The rest of the gang was just enjoying the nice weather (FINALLY!!). Just hanging out making silly faces!