Sudbury

Wild at Heart Refuge Centre needs appliances to feed baby animals

You might be polishing your skis and sharpening your skates as winter seriously sets in but preparations for spring are already underway at the Wild At Heart Refuge Centre in Sudbury. The shelter for wounded and orphaned wild animals starts to get really busy in late March and early April with newborns who need to be fed around the clock.

Organization looking for used automatic shut-off kettles, blenders, and electric whisks

Wild At Heart is getting ready for newborn animals like this baby raccoon that needed care at the refuge in 2017. (Adeline Charpin / Wild at Heart Animal Refuge Centre)

You might be polishing your skis and sharpening your skates as winter seriously sets in but preparations for spring are already underway at the Wild At Heart Refuge Centre in Sudbury.

The shelter for wounded and orphaned wild animals starts to get really busy in late March and early April with newborns who need to be fed around the clock.

Dr. Rod Jouppi says staff need to mix up a lot of different foods and milk products, so he's asking the public for donations of used, but working, small appliances such as automatic shut-off kettles, blenders and hand-held mixers.

Jouppi says different appliances are used for different species, for instance, one might be used for meal worms and crickets for baby birds, and there may be 50-60 of them at a time waiting with open beaks.

Simultaneously, staff might need a bigger appliance to mix several litres of milk formula for a moose calf.

"We have quite a busy kitchen in the spring. We make all of our own foods so that they are as close to what exists in nature as possible. So you can't really go and get a quart of something or a can of something. It's all made in house and it's all usually blended and mixed and so on," says Jouppi.

Outside, Jouppi says they need dollies to move things around as well as shovels, garden tools and wheelbarrows.

"Because we have a lot of animals when they get to be weaned, they are moved outside and everything has to be brought to different housing units outside. So it's just amazing the amount of things that we do need to just help make the foods, move the food and clean up the housing units. They're cleaned every day."

Jouppi says there is a tremendous amount of labour and physical work, and volunteers are essential.

At the peak of the busy season in the spring, he says there are two shifts of twelve people providing care around the clock at the animal refuge.

Anyone interested in learning about volunteering, or calling to arrange for a donation, should go to the website for Wild At Heart Refuge Centre.

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