JULY 18, 2012
Southwest Wildlife receives wild babies for rehab caring for several species
Heat, access to water major factors in wild orphans’ survival
SCOTTSDALE – Baby coyotes, bobcats, javelina skunks and raccoons, many of them orphans, have arrived at Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center (SWCC) in Scottsdale.
During the summer, the wildlife rehab department at SWCC sees its largest numbers. Staff literally works around the clock making formula, giving medications, feeding little ones every two hours, and caring for the sick and injured.
As reliable water sources dry up in the summer, wildlife are forced to travel long distances to find water. This displacement subjects them to conflicts with other animals and humans, and a greater risk of being hit by cars. Wild fire also causes wildlife to move and leaves them with no home to return to.
Animals recently rescued by SWCC, which rehabilitates and returns to the wild about 70 percent of the animals it takes in, are:
A coyote puppy that was caught in a leg hold trap and another pup recovering from surgery
A bobcat that had mistakenly been turned into the Arizona Humane Society by someone who believed it was a regular kitten
Two other bobcat kittens orphaned when the home owners had their mother trapped and relocated, not knowing she had kittens
Two javelina orphans found by a motorist alongside a busy road, huddled next to their dead mother who had been hit by a car
A mother skunk with babies
What to do if you find a baby animal
Animal mothers choose their nesting sites carefully, knowing they will need to leave their young alone for long periods of time to hunt for food. If you find a baby animal, leave the location and call SWCC at 480-471-9109 and press 2. You can also call 480-433-5656 and leave a message. SWCC staff will help you assess the situation but, if the babies appear to be healthy, they should be left alone.
If it is determined that a mother has become unable to reach her babies, human intervention is required. Do not try to raise an orphaned wild animal as a pet — it is illegal to possess native wildlife as pets in Arizona. SWCC provides specialized care to orphans and will raise them as wild animals, so they can be returned to the wild once they are mature enough to survive on their own.