Showing posts with label Wildlife. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Wildlife. Show all posts

Friday, April 27, 2012

Chincoteague Seafood Festival

The 2012 Chincoteague Spring Seafood Festival May 5 at Tom's Cove Park...Noon to 4 p.m.

Call the Chincoteague Chamber of Commerce for tickets. 757-336-6161

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Family Of Foxes Found Living In Mans Backyard

A group of foxes in Greendale are being called the "FOX 6." Dan Molthen says, "When I was 12-years-old, which was around 1946, we used to have a fox go through our yard."

In the 65 years since then, Dan Molthen has continued living in his Greendale neighborhood where he's welcomed plenty of new neighbors. He says, "We have foxes in our neighbor's yard."

After finding the family of foxes Dan called FOX6. Dan took plenty of pictures before FOX6 cameras showed up. He said, "They play like little kittens, actually. You know how kittens get together 'n' they bit, 'n' they'll hit each other, 'n' paw each other."

The photographs were necessary to prove Dan's claims to his wife and FOX6. He said, "I showed her the pictures 'n' she said, 'You gotta be kidding me!'. She says, 'You did that on the computer!'. I says, 'I don't know anything about computers!'"

Dan says he thinks the foxes will eventually make their way to a larger home.


Saturday, April 9, 2011

Deer Stands Guard Over Goose Nest In Cemetary

. REUTERS/Doug Benz

By: Neale Gulley
BUFFALO, New York (Reuters) – A deer has been standing watch for several days over a female goose nesting in a city cemetery, a scene normally reserved for a children's movie.

"People always want to turn it into a Disney story and in this case it's not far off," said Gina Browning, director of the Erie County SPCA.

For at least four days, the buck stood guard near the nest of a Canada goose as she sits on her eggs inside a large urn at Forest Lawn cemetery, home to the remains of President Millard Fillmore and rock icon Rick James.

"He does appear to be guarding the goose, as it were," Erie County SPCA Wildlife Administrator Joel Thomas said. "He's within touching distance of her -- there's no doubt what's going on."

The deer, which he said looks like a buck that has shed its antlers, has not strayed from his post.
Employees at the cemetery were alerted to the situation after the animal positioned itself between the bird and an employee of a company that traps and relocates geese, which Thomas said have become a messy problem in large numbers.

"When he approached the bird with a net, the deer puts itself between him and the bird, and he's repeated that behavior for some time," he said.

Typically positioning himself broadside to any car or passerby who comes near the nest, the deer stares intently until the potential aggressor moves on, he said.

Why exactly the deer has chosen to champion a bird of a different feather is a complicated question, Thomas said. While interdependence among species in the wild is not unheard of, Thomas said whatever is causing this animal kingdom alliance is anybody's guess.

"From a human standpoint we can fill in a lot of blanks but it doesn't mean we're right," he said. "Does he know she's nesting? I don't know. Is he going to leave when the chicks hatch? I don't know."

One thing is clear: It could go on for some time.

The gestation period for a Canada goose is up to 31 days, Thomas said, with the nesting season only just beginning. While normally both the male and female share the task of keeping the eggs warm, the expectant mother at Forest Lawn appears not to have that luxury.

"If the deer is determined, he's going to be on the job for at least three weeks," Thomas said.

Devotion rather than emotion seems to be driving the buck.

"The deer and the goose are not in love," Thomas said.
(Editing by Barbara Goldberg and Jerry Norton)


Thanks Sheri

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Student Participation Wanted In Designing Duck Stamp

ASSATEAGUE -- Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge invites students K-12 attending public, private, or home schools to participate in the 2010 Junior Duck Stamp Design Contest.

"The competition is an art-based educational program that allows students to participate in a nationwide waterfowl arts competition. The process also exposes students to the nation's wealth of migratory waterfowl and motivates students to take active roles in conserving these species," said Virginia Junior Duck Stamp Program coordinator, Aubrey Hall.

Hall also emphasized that "the program is meant to be a fun journey into the world of waterfowl. The artistic skill level of the students is not the focus of the contest. Not only do we want artwork from all children, we enjoy seeing the variety of pictures that the students produce."

All students entering the state contest will receive a certificate of participation. Entries may also receive prizes or honorable mention ribbons. The State Best of Show will represent Virginia in the national competition. National awards include a complimentary trip to the First Day of Duck Stamp Sales Ceremony in Washing-ton, D.C. and a monetary award.

Participants select a bird from a list of native North American waterfowl. Other design guidelines include, but are not limited to: a size of 9"x12"; horizontal orientation; and the absence of lettering, words, or signatures on the front of the design. For more information, contact refuge staff or explore the Federal Duck Stamp website

Entries must be mailed to Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge, P.O. Box 62, Chincoteague, Va. 23336 and postmarked by midnight, March 15. Judging will occur Friday, March 19.

The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. It is both a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals commitment to public service. For more information on its work and the people who make it happen, visit

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Wounded Bald Eagle Had To Be Euthanized

ONANCOCK -- An American bald eagle had to be euthanized after it was found severely wounded by a jogger who minutes earlier heard gunshots in the area.

The Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries is investigating the incident, which happened in Mount Nebo, near Onancock.

"Shooting a bald eagle is the equivalent of burning an American flag," said Michael Fazio of Nebo Lane, who saw the bird fall out of the sky late last week.

It is unclear whether the bird was shot or was injured some other way, according to a wildlife rehabilitator who was called to the scene. A veterinarian who examined the eagle did not find any shot in it, but its right wing was "totally destroyed," wildlife rehabilitator Kathy Cummings said.

The eagle's body was taken to the Wildlife Center of Virginia in Waynesboro, where a necropsy will be conducted to help determine what happened, Game Warden Sarah Druy said.

Bald eagles are protected under the federal Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act, originally passed in 1940. The penalty for violating provisions of the act is a fine of up to $5,000 or up to one year in prison. Felony convictions carry a maximum fine of $250,000 or two years' imprisonment, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service website.

The birds also are protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and the Lacy Act.

Cummings said eagles sometimes fight with each other during breeding season and the bird could have been injured during a fight.

Fazio was jogging along the road when a man wearing a hood and carrying a gun shot over Fazio's head. The two men had a verbal exchange in which the shooter said Fazio should not be out running on the road during hunting season and Fazio asked the man to wait five minutes before continuing in order to give Fazio time to get out of the area safely. The man said he was shooting at targets.

Fazio continued jogging and had gone about the length of three utility poles when saw the eagle spiraling out of the sky.

"I don't know if they are connected. ... We're not sure exactly what happened," he said.

Fazio ran back to his house, about a mile away, told his parents what had happened and grabbed a blanket, with the thought of trying to help the injured animal.

When he and his father returned to the spot, they found the bird about 20 feet away from the road.

They called the Accomack County Sheriff's Office, who referred them to Game and Inland Fisheries, where they got a recorded message. Fazio's father then called a local veterinarian, who gave him Cummings' phone number.

Cummings came to the scene and took the bird to Eastern Shore Animal Hospital, but its injuries were too severe and the bird was euthanized.

Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries crime line at 800-237-5712.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Virginia Zoo Giraffe Calf Failed To Survive

Norfolk, VA – The Virginia Zoo is sad to announce that the giraffe calf born on October 9, 2010 has failed to thrive. He died Thursday, October 14, 2010. Preliminary findings from the necropsy indicate he had acute septicemia.

Abnormalities were observed in the calf’s heart and lungs. The final results of the histopathology (microscopic examination of tissues), in 2 weeks, may more clearly show the cause of death.

Although the young animal had appeared alert and well, he collapsed on Thursday morning. Zoo keepers were providing supplemental feedings for the calf because its first time mother displayed minimal maternal instincts.

This lack of care is common in the wild where the concept of survival of the fittest is protection for the herd. If a mother in the wild senses that a newborn is not healthy and will not thrive, conditions that are not detectable to humans, she may abandon it. These instincts are strong even in animals living in Zoos.

The male calf was the offspring of the Zoo’s adult male giraffe, Billy, and one of the females, Keana. He was Keana’s first calf. The Zoo’s other female giraffe gave birth to a female calf in October 2009. That giraffe proved to be healthy and strong, and she was transferred to Disney’s Animal Kingdom this week where she will join a herd of young giraffe on exhibit.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Beach Wildlife Expert Helps With Rescue in the Gulf


Kathryn Owens decided to pursue a career in the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service because of the Exxon Valdez oil spill in Alaska. After seeing so much damage to birds, fish and marine life, "I just knew I wanted to help."

So it seems only natural that Owens was one of the first wildlife experts from Hampton Roads to do battle with the massive ongoing oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Owens, a deputy manager at Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge in Virginia Beach, just returned from a two-week stint in Louisiana, where she helped to organize rescues of oil-covered birds and waterfowl.

The experience left her emotionally and physically drained. But she cannot wait to go back.

"It's a nightmare scenario," Owens said Monday, "but it's exactly where I needed to be and where I wanted to be."

Her boss, refuge manager Jared Brandwein, reported to the Gulf last week just as Owens was returning. Refuge biologist John Gallegos got word Monday that he, too, will go to Louisiana, where he will lead a rescue team in search of oily birds trapped at sea, in marshes and on beaches.

The Fish and Wildlife Service has more than 495 employees fighting the BP oil spill, according to agency statistics. Most go for two weeks at a time and are not supposed to work more than 16 hours per day - "but that doesn't always happen," Owens said with a chuckle.

Her days typically began at 6 a.m. and ended "about 10 or 11 at night," when she returned to her hotel room, exhausted.

Owens was assigned to the Incident Command Center, located at BP offices in Houma, La. She thought she would be scrubbing oil off pelicans and terns.

But lacking enough personnel, responders asked Owens to coordinate rescue efforts instead - putting crews together with boats, equipment, fuel and resources. She was on the phone almost continuously for 14 straight days.

"I would have cleaned toilets if they had asked me," she said. "There are so many people working so hard down there. You just roll up your sleeves and dig in. It's the only thing we can do."

According to government statistics updated Monday, 724 birds have been collected alive, the vast majority in Louisiana. Another 957 have died. Sea turtles also are bearing a big brunt, with 387 reported dead and another 117 undergoing rehabilitation.

Owens, a wildlife ecologist by training, said one of her worst days in the Gulf was seeing images on TV of the first birds pulled from the water with oil caked to all parts of their bodies.

"There was just silence in the command center," she recalled. "Some people had to leave the room, they were so emotional."

Owens could feel an air of depression among workers and locals, "in part because it's just so senseless. And we have no idea how comprehensive this is. This'll take decades to deal with."

As for herself, Owens said, "I was on the verge of tears every day, and still am."

Working at BP offices and side by side with BP employees was "definitely strange," she said. Because so many Louisiana residents are so mad over the spill, especially at BP, Owens said government staffers were told not to wear their federal credentials away from the command center - and definitely not to wear anything with BP printed on it.

"It's a security issue," she said.

Still, Owens said, most locals support government efforts and are friendly to visiting workers like herself: "They realize we're heart broken too."

Owens said Gulf seafood remains available - she recalled one delicious plate of crawfish etouffee at a restaurant in Houma, "my only night out" - despite ever-expanding closure areas because of pollution.

Back in Virginia, Owens is working with the Coast Guard, state scientists and other authorities to cope with any spilled oil in the Gulf that might push up the Atlantic coast, as some forecasters predict.

Back Bay staffers were asked to identify critical habitats along the Virginia coast, including much of the wildlife refuge, where protections should be readied just in case.

"At least we have time to plan," Owens said. "The Gulf didn't have that luxury."

Friday, June 4, 2010

BP Disaster Reaches Florida's Panhandle Beaches

............ smell of oil hangs heavy in the sea air....... children with plastic shovels scoop up clumps of goo in the waves......... beachcombers collect tarballs as if they were seashells.......watermen can no longer work the waters............ resort towns are almost empty...... and wildlife dies...................

Think about all this when another country in need comes calling..............