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Baby Red Fox Squirrels saved by TWRC in Houston

Posted: March 31, 2016 at 1:24 pm   /   by   /   comments (2)
Baby red fox squirrels

Baby red fox squirrels

Oak Tree Trimming

We have a large live oak tree that has been growing as if it is on steroids. Although we had it trimmed last year, we employed a tree trimming service to give it a severe “haircut” this year. It resulted in making an unexpected visit to our local wildlife rehabilitation rescue place in Houston.  Some innocent baby squirrels were accidentally impacted when they and their nest were suddenly catapulted to the ground.

The three little darling creatures were so young that their eyes were not yet open.

Fortunately they seemed not to have suffered any injuries.  Losing their safe haven amidst the tree branches and being separated from their mother had to have been the biggest shock of their young lives.

Baby squirrels lost their nest & mother

Baby squirrels lost their nest & mother

Texas Wildlife Rehabilitation Coalition

When our tree trimmers showed us the three little baby squirrels on the ground the first thing that my husband did was to look up the information online about the Texas Wildlife Rehabilitation folks.  Theyhad helped us in the past. We knew that they had moved to another location and needed to check their hours of operation as well as new locale.

The TWRC facility is now located at 10811 Hammerly, Suite 200, Houston, Texas 77043. They are open 7 days a week from 10AM to 2PM.  The TWRC is staffed with a group of caring individuals who know what to do in emergency situations to help injured wildlife or those in need of care such as our baby squirrels.

Unfortunately it was past 2PM when this accident happened.

But fortunately, information is right there online coaching individuals as to what to do until (and if) the animals need to be brought in to the shelter.

3 little baby squirrels

3 little baby squirrels

Baby Squirrels

Information online advised putting these babies into a box with some soft bedding keeping them away from any ants.

Using an old and soft sheet we made a little bed in a box and put the three little guys in it. They immediately curled up and snuggled close to one another.

The posted information also said to leave the box outside in case the mother squirrel would come back and relocate her young ones.

This we did with some trepidation hoping that other wild critters or roaming cats would not find these little defenseless guys.

Texas Wildlife Rehabilitation Coalition in Houston

Texas Wildlife Rehabilitation Coalition in Houston

Checking on them several times late at night and early in the morning, we found them each time to have pulled the sheet over themselves and huddling together they appeared to be sleeping most of the time.

I am certain that without making any noises, the squirrels mother nor other creatures were drawn to finding them.

Thus we decided that we needed to get them to the shelter soon after the shelter opened so as to get them to some much needed help.

Animal Rehabilitation

Entrance into the TWRC

Entrance into the TWRC

The staff and many volunteers at TWRC keep the doors open for those seeking to find help for wildlife of all kinds.

We were still filling out some paperwork when another gentleman brought in some baby possums. The mother opossum had been killed by a dog and these babies would have died if he had not intervened.

Prior to leaving another group brought in a large big beaked bird that had a broken leg.

Some animals if they cannot be helped are humanely euthanized. At least they do not suffer long and needlessly.

But a good number are cared for in the best way possible until they can once again be released back into the wild which, of course, is the ultimate goal of this organization and others doing the same kind of work.

Frodo the resident opossum

Frodo the resident opossum

Opossums and More…

The reasons that the animals in this particular room of the Texas Wildlife Rehabilitation Coalition cannot be released back into the wild vary with each one.

In the case of Frodo the possum, he had toes missing and it was determined that it would prevent him from being able to climb as is their norm and therefore he would be in danger.

Frodo graces the TWRC with his presence and has been given quite a sizable cage in which to live and entertain visitors with his friendly antics.

According to some staff, he loves his yogurt which is supplied to him along with other food on a daily basis. The yogurt gives him some of the needed calcium that he needs.

Frodo seems happy to greet visitors.

Frodo seems happy to greet visitors.

Some dry pellet cat food along with some vegetables, fruit and other nutrients and limited amounts of meat are given to Frodo.

The gentleman that had brought in the baby possums asked if they would like some of his figs off of his tree when they become ripe, and the answer was a happy affirmative.

Donations of all types are gratefully accepted and the website supplies a wish list if people can help donate things to help the wildlife that is aided on a daily basis.

Pretty non-poisonous snake

Pretty non-poisonous snake

Snakes

They had an interesting selection of snakes in display cases and they all were given names. Meet Pearl and Dusty below…

Why captivity for some animals and not others?

I specifically asked why these snakes could not be released back into the wild.

The reason given in most cases was that they had become so used to being handled by humans (when being treated for whatever the initial cause was that brought them to the shelter) that the snakes had lost their fear of humans and would be threatened for that reason.

One snake in particular suffered from having seizures!

Pretty snake at TWRC

Pretty snake at TWRC

All of the snakes were named and seemed to be well cared for…although I must admit that if I never saw a snake up close and personal in the wild, that would be fine with me.

They are useful predators and generally would just as soon shy away from people rather than confront us.

Viewed within the confines of their cages inside of the Texas Wildlife Rehabilitation shelter, I must admit that the coloration of these snakes is beautiful.

Glimpse of the tarantula

Glimpse of the tarantula

Tarantula

If you would like to get a look at a live Chilean rose haired tarantula…come and visit the Texas Wildlife Rehabilitation Coalition!

While you are there, meet the people who do this type of rescue work and by checking their wish list first, perhaps you can bring much needed supplies along with you to donate to the cause.

Squirrels

Bob and Lucy are two non-releasable squirrels that are among the first to greet visitors to the shelter.

They are in a large cage outfitted with all kinds of branches and other stimuli to keep them seemingly happily engaged.

Bob and Lucy are Eastern Gray Squirrels (Sciurus Carolinensis) according to the sign posted on the cage and are used for educational purposes.

Bob & Lucy in their large cage

Bob & Lucy in their large cage

Room in TRWC where animals are kept that cannot be released into the wild.

Room in TRWC where animals are kept that cannot be released into the wild.

Donors to the TWRC have their names inscribed on this & another tree inside of the shelter.

Donors to the TWRC have their names inscribed on this & another tree inside of the shelter.

The little baby squirrels that we brought in to the shelter we were told were fox squirrels.

Years previous to this we had brought an injured baby squirrel in to their old shelter location.

One signs a document as to whether one wishes to learn the outcome of the animals one surrenders to the TWRC. We normally say “yes.”

We were contacted by a lady who titled herself “The Squirrel Lady” as she fostered and took care of these orphans or injured babies until they could assume their place back in the wild. After talking to her on the telephone and learning that our injured one was recovering nicely, she invited my mother and me to come to her home and visit our little recovering waif.

That was amazing!

This lady totally dedicated herself to the saving of squirrels of all kinds.

She had incubators and cages of all dimensions in her living room, dining room, kitchen and covered patio. Probably other rooms were filled as well with paraphernalia helpful toward rehabilitating squirrels.

Many different types of nests on display in TWRC

Many different types of nests on display in TWRC

One cage even had a baby flying squirrel in it!

The older ones closer to being released were put into the large cages on her patio where the wild squirrels in the yard could interact with the caged ones prior to release. Most when deemed ready were taken to a secret spot way out in the countryside and released to hopefully live out a grand squirrels life.

The baby squirrels like the injured one years ago and the three babies with their eyes still not open that we brought in to the shelter this past weekend had to be fed on an every 3 hour schedule.

That is true dedication on the part of these rehab people!!!

We also learned (from the “squirrel lady”) that it was her own money that she spent purchasing all of the groceries from the produce department each week to feed all of her temporary wards.

When visiting her my mother and I took several sackfuls of what she said that she ordinarily purchased. I remember that it was nuts of various types for the older squirrels as well as things like leaf lettuce, etc. I no longer remember the other particulars.

These are special people indeed doing this type of life affirming work!

Painted on a wall of another animal charity in Houston

Painted on a wall of another animal charity in Houston

I asked at the Texas Wildlife Rehabilitation shelter whether “The Squirrel Lady” still took in animals and the reply was “which one?” I had not kept her name from the past. 

We were told that these wildlife rehabilitation folks that dedicate their lives to helping animals in need tend to specialize. So whether the same lady or another special person ends up taking care of our displaced baby squirrels, it does not matter. They will be cared for by some nature loving person who dedicates their lives to helping out Mother Nature.

The call would be put out to these people to see who had room for more baby squirrels, baby possums and who knows how many other babies that would be brought in that day.

Pictures of some of the animals aided by TWRC

Pictures of some of the animals aided by TWRC

Wildlife of all sizes and shapes are taken in to the Texas Wildlife Rehabilitation Coalition.

If you live in other areas of the country check your local listings for wildlife rehabilitation centers to find helpful and caring folks where you live if you ever need help with injured or orphaned animal care.

Support your local Wildlife Rehabilitation centers. You never know when you may need their services!

Location of the Texas Wildlife Rehabilitation Coalition where we took our baby red fox squirrels:

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  • September 2, 2017 at 2:09 pm Maria

    This post shows how big and beautiful caring hearts can be – to ALL four-legged friends.

    Love how all the critters are named … enjoyed ‘meeting’ them through your photography.

    Thanks for sharing on FB. Sending you positive energy, hugs and love – be safe, dear Peggy.

    Reply
    • September 2, 2017 at 4:22 pm Peggy

      Hi Maria,

      You are correct in saying that there are many caring hearts and all creatures are valued. There must be so many more right now in need of help assuming they survived the Hurricane Harvey aftermath of flooding. In areas of Houston and beyond it is still happening. The rain has stopped but the flooding continues because of all the rivers and bayous and creeks draining in this direction. Thanks for not only your comment but your continued caring.

      Reply