The first baby born in 2021, a Eurasian Collared-Dove nestling. Courtesy/NMWC
ESPAÑOLA — New Mexico Wildlife Center (NMWC) just admitted its first baby wildlife of 2021. Saturday, March 6 a Eurasian Collared-Dove was found orphaned and brought to NMWC’s wildlife hospital. It will be cared for by the wildlife rehabilitators until it is deemed releasable (likely in about one month).
This baby is just the start, with hundreds more expected to come through NMWC’s wildlife hospital in the next few months. Peak “baby season” in New Mexico usually occurs between April-August with some babies showing up as early as March and as late as October.
“If you find a baby wild animal, always call us first! We can help you determine if you should try to reunite it with the baby’s parents or if bringing the baby to us will be the best thing. Remember, mom is always going to do a better job,” NMWC wildlife rehabilitator Haley Sharpe said.
During this busy season at NMWC, thousands of phone calls are answered by staff and 70 percent of all patients admitted arrive between April and September. To prepare for the baby season, NMWC’s wildlife rehabilitators are stocking the hospital with formula, blankets and more items for raising baby wildlife.
They also are preparing the outdoor enclosures to house older animals ready to practice running, climbing, flying and burrowing before release into the wild. A few of these enclosures have reached the end of their lifespans and need to be replaced before May. Visit http://bit.ly/GFMSquirrels for more information about NMWC’s campaign to raise funds for these new enclosures.
“Baby Season is our most stressful time of year. Baby bird feeding timers go off every 15-30 minutes and we never know what will come through our door so we need to be prepared for everything. You can help us by contributing to our fund to purchase new enclosures, going on our Amazon Wishlist to buy a packet of formula, donating money ($6 pays for a baby cottontail to grow up), or even donating your time by volunteering or becoming a release site,” Sharpe said.
NMWC is at 19 Wheat Street in Española. For more details, visit NMWC website or call the center at 505.753.9505.
About New Mexico Wildlife Center:
Connecting people and wildlife for an abundant tomorrow. The Center is open to the public for self-guided tours from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Saturday. Sick and injured animals are taken in seven days a week, but it is advised that you call first after 3 p.m.or on Sundays. https://newmexicowildlifecenter.org/
A baby Red Squirrel from the 2020 baby season being hand-fed formula. Courtesy/NMWC