Woodford Cedar Run Wildlife Refuge held a “baby shower” earlier this month at Medford United Methodist Church, where the nonprofit collected essential items to prepare for the arrival of thousands of injured and orphaned wild animals.
“That’s really kind of our big community fundraiser to collect items that are much needed in our wildlife hospital,” said Tracey Bloodworth, director of development and communications for Cedar Run.
“Many of these are going to be puppy pads and paper towels, tissues, cotton balls, Q-tips, Dawn soap, trash bags … all of that stuff to keep our wildlife hospital clean, hygienic and to make sure that these babies, as well as all of the patients that do come in, are getting the immediate care and treatment and we’re not at an ailment because of supplies.”
Cedar Run treated more than 4,000 injured and orphaned wild animals last year who arrived between April and September – wildlife baby season – and needed immediate treatment and care. Many of them came in as babies and required treatment and feeding plans designated by state and federally licensed wildlife rehabilitators, including species-specific formula tube fed several times a day and a species-specific treatment plan.
The nonprofit’s primary goal is to rehabilitate the animals for release, a second chance at living in the wild. Cedar Run is located on 171 acres of land with more than three miles of hiking trails. It houses nearly 60 non-releasable wildlife ambassadors, a nature center and a wildlife rehabilitation hospital.
“They’re (non-releasable animals) here for a reason,” Bloodworth explained, ” … whether it’s for their well-being or previous injuries that prevented that. But they all have some special medication or treatment plan and everybody’s an individual.”
Cedar Run has been a vital force on all matters related to wildlife and habitat for more than 60 years, according to the nonprofit’s website, with services that educate, inspire and instill a sense of stewardship in local youth and residents and promote the protection of natural resources.
“We’ve been doing a lot of really interesting programs,” Bloodworth noted. “ … We have nature journaling, where you’re just spending some time getting connected with nature, doing little sketches and you don’t have to be a (great) artist or draw very well. It’s just putting down your thoughts and your observations to get in touch with nature again.”
Additional education programs at Cedar Run include onsite field trips, family and night hikes, Scout programs, and outdoor, nature-based summer camps. It also offers volunteer opportunities and internships.
For more on the nonprofit, visit www.cedarrun.org.
“The best way to get involved is to become a volunteer, come to one of our events …” Bloodworth recommended. “We have great social media and email content of tips and tricks for wildlife and things that people see out in the wild.”