Jan 26, 2016

Coyote caught on barbed wire fence (GRAPHIC)

This morning around 10:30 WES received a call from the superintendent of Coyote Creek Golf Club in Morgan Hill, CA. He and his crew had freed a coyote that had gotten hung up on a barbed wire fence, presumably overnight. It had a severe injury to its leg and was not able to run off.

They'd been making calls all morning, looking for help, and no one was willing to respond - we were their 7th phone call! Unfortunately, this is very common, not just in California but across the US - there are very few trained and equipped first responders for wildlife emergencies.

When WES' response team arrived, they found the coyote hiding in tall grass. They approached slowly. The coyote made a brief attempt to get away, but could barely move. It was easily scruffed and moved to an awaiting crate for transport to a local wildlife hospital.

Watch the rescue video below:

Once at the Wildlife Center for Silicon Valley, medical staff sedated the animal to get a better look at its injury. 

The male coyote looked larger, but weighed in at 20 pounds. They estimated it to be about 4 years old. Unfortunately, it had suffered tremendous damage to its leg - the tendons had been severed, there was nothing that could be done. It was humanely euthanized.

Please check out these PDFs on best fencing to keep livestock and wildlife safe:

Fencing With Wildlife In Mind

Wildlife Friendly Fences

Predator Fencing

Scroll to view the image of the coyote as it was found in the fence. WARNING: GRAPHIC

Jan 23, 2016

Injured American white pelican evades capture

On January 12th, an American white pelican was spotted at Shoreline Park. Robin Agarwal, a citizen scientist, noticed something was wrong - it looked like one of its legs was injured. 

Robin immediately reported her observation to the Wildlife Center for Silicon Valley using a mobile app iNaturalist.org (part of the California Academy of Science) to communicate the pelican’s photos and GPS coordinates. Her initial iNaturalist report can be viewed HERE.

Since this could be a potentially difficult rescue, WCSV forwarded the information to WES. 

That evening, after dark, our lead responder in the San Jose area, Andrew Bear, met up with Robin to scout for the bird. 

They spent about two hours scanning the slough with searchlights, but never spotted the pelican.

The next morning, Robin went to look for the pelican. She observed three healthy white pelicans, but not the injured one.

Then, yesterday, the bird was reported again in the Charleston Slough, about 75 yards off the main path.

Once again, Andrew responded. This time he had the help of a park ranger to access the trail.

He found the bird!

But, before he could get anywhere near it, the bird flew away - over the slough and out of sight.

White pelicans are elusive and more difficult to approach than brown pelicans. Wild ones, unhabituated to people, do not 'bait in', so there's no chance to draw it closer to capturers. Regardless, we'll continue to accept reports and respond if we think we'll be successful in capturing it. 


To get iNaturalist, go HERE.  It's quick, easy and free!

If you're interested in becoming an on-call volunteer with WES, go HERE.

Jan 22, 2016

Opossum shot with arrows

Image Riverside County Animal Services

This morning, in Riverside County, an adult opossum was found shot with two arrows - one penetrating near its right eye, the other arrow through the animal's midsection. 
The animal was contained by a county animal control officer and rushed to the county shelter in Jurupa Valley, where veterinarian Dr. Magid Anwar performed emergency surgery to carefully remove the arrows. Amazingly, the animal is expected to recover despite some lung damage
The opossum was found near Hole Avenue and Jones Avenue in the La Sierra neighborhood of Riverside. 

Thanks to WES supporters, we are able to offer a significant reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for this horrible act of cruelty. 
If you'd like to add to the reward, please email our director at rebecca (at) wildlifeservices (dot) org to make your pledge or leave a message at 1-866-WILD-911 Ext. 4.
Stay tuned!

Jan 21, 2016

A picture worth a thousand words

This picture was sent to us by someone worried about a coyote in their neighborhood.

Do you see what this is?

It's a coyote suffering from mange - an infestation of mites has caused the animal to lose fur and break out in sores. The coyote's ears indicate how cold and miserable it feels. 

Look what it's standing next to. A poison bait station for rodents. 

Perhaps the coyote is waiting for its next meal - another poison-laced mouse or rat. 

Could this be the cause of this poor animal's failing condition? 

Jan 13, 2016

Coyote v Car

Last night, we were transferred a call through Santa Cruz 911, about a coyote that had been hit by at least one vehicle. Police Officer Hansen was on scene and described the animal somewhat contained - a very kind man (Very brave and talented, too!) was holding the girl - scruffing her by the back of the neck. 

Once scruffed, coyotes tend to 'give in', waiting to feel even a slight relax in the grip for escape.

Our response time was going to be about 45 minutes. Too long. We called Native Animal Rescue to see if they'd respond. Thankfully, they were only minutes away.

In the meantime, we asked if the coyote could be temporarily placed in the back of the police car - in the 'cage', until rescuers arrived, which they did (Thank you Officer Hansen!!!)

NAR rescuers arrived to find the coyote in good shape considering its run-in with a car. The young female coyote, estimated to be about a year and a half old, was transferred into a large crate where it could rest for the night.

The next morning WES transported the coyote to the Wildlife Center of Silicon Valley for examination.

There, she was sedated for a complete exam including three radiographs. 

Luckily, there were no fractures but she'd sustained injury to her left carpus - some small abrasions and soft tissue damage that will heal quickly. They also found that she had hookworms, but, blood tests did not reveal any exposure to anticoagulant rodenticides.

According to medical staff her prognosis is good. She'll be returned to her home turf next week if all goes well. 

State tuned!


Jan 7, 2016

Hawk caught on barbed wire

Last night we were forwarded a call from our local shelter about a hawk caught on a barbed wire fence in La Selva Beach. 

WES' founder and director responded to find a red-tailed hawk tangled in a fence, caught by one of the barbs.

The reporting party, a couple who lived next door, assisted in the rescue. Check out the video:

The bird was transported to Native Animal Rescue where it is expected to make a full recovery.

UPDATE: 2-3-2016

Thanks to the great care the hawk received at Native Animal Rescue, it was released back to where it was found today. Many thanks to the Miles Family for helping with transportation. Check out the video:

If you'd like, support our local rescue program with a donation of any size. 
Even small monthly amounts go a long way!

Check the box that says Make This Recurring. 

Jan 5, 2016

Duck Down

By Deanna Barth

Today, I received a direct call from a woman named Rhonna whom I’d met a few months ago when she found a downed falcon near her property. This time she was calling about a duck. 

On Tuesday afternoon, she had just let her dog outside when she noticed a mallard sitting on the pond in the distance. She watched as her Labrador Retriever sprinted across the ground towards the drake and expected the duck to take to the sky, but it didn’t. Instead, it sat motionless as the dog gently scooped it up and carried it back and placed it at her feet. 

She didn’t see any obvious injuries but thought it odd that it hadn’t flown away, so she placed it in a small enclosure. The area was about 15 feet across, with a small Koi pond, dense shrubs to hide beneath and surrounded by a short fence. She figured the duck could rest here where it would be less vulnerable to predators while still being able to fly away at any time - if it could. 

The next morning she was surprised to see the duck still there. She waited most of the day, thinking it would leave, but by the afternoon, she called me to come take a look. 

The duck was resting beneath the bushes next to the fence. Rhonna suggested I walk right up to it and pick it up. I hesitated. One thing I’ve learned, when a rescue looks that easy, it won’t be! 

Based on its behavior, I thought it might not be capable of flying, which meant it would be even more anxious to run away from me and head for open space, so I needed to cut off its exits. 

Can you make out the duck?

I placed my daughter on one side of the bushes, holding an open sheet and Rhonna on the other side in the same position. Knowing the duck would then head towards the water, I approached with my net, carefully walking along the edge of the pond. 

It worked perfectly. But just as I moved my net into position, the handle became caught on a tree branch and threw me off balance. As I attempted to regain my footing on the slippery pond edge, I fell in. I was shocked to find that it was 5 foot deep - I was submerged up to my shoulders! 

On this cold and rainy day, to say I was chilled would be an understatement - but I still needed to get the duck!  

I quickly got back up and herded the drake towards the fence, this time being careful to not get my net stuck. Success - we got him!  

After a change of clothes, we transported the mallard to the SPCA for Monterey County wildlife center for care.  

UPDATE 1-6-2016

I called for an update and it was confirmed that the duck had no injuries but he was quite ill and unwilling to eat. They would start tube feeding and providing supportive care. 

Hopefully he will continue to improve. Stay tuned!

UPDATE: 1-10-16

Apparently the duck made a full recovery and was released today!

If you'd like, support our local rescue program with a donation of any size. 
Even small monthly amounts go a long way!

Check the box that says Make This Recurring. 

Jan 1, 2016

First rescue of 2016: skunk stuck in patio

It's skunk breeding season. The weasel-like ratters are all about, roaming the night, seeking each other out and exploring for potential den sites under homes, causing quite a stink. This time of year roads and highways are littered with the unlucky ones.

Last night, New Years, real fireworks outmatched any amorous sparks, possibly leading one skunk to spill into a walled-in patio on Beach Drive in Aptos.

This morning, the skunk was found frantically trying to escape - even climbing the low steps of the outdoor spiral staircase, but making little progress. Skunks don't climb well, at all. There was no way for the animal to get out on its own. 

Both Native Animal Rescue and WES were called to the scene. (Thank you Mary!) 

The skunk was extremely alert and very, very upset. 

After losing in a draw of Ro-sham-bo, one of WES' directors took the lead. Check out the video, below:

If you're experiencing problems with skunks in your yard, look for the nearest Humane Wildlife Control service from this site, HERE.

Want more skunk? Watch the full episode of Is That Skunk, below: