Monday, September 20, 2010

Fall Brings Wild Babies, too

Calls and assistance are picking up again as our Wildlife Education & Rehabilitation Program handles another round of wildlife baby season. Although we usually think “spring” is when we encounter baby wildlife, many animals produce a second wave of offspring in the late summer or early fall.

Whenever a wild baby is healthy and active, we advise that the best course of action for the animal is to return them back to the wild. Better yet, we hope you'll call us before you interfere (440-871.2900 ext. 204!)

Infant Eastern Cottontail
Eastern Cottontails are among the wildlife still reproducing in the autumn. Baby bunnies are almost never abandoned, even when they are all alone.In order to minimize the risk of attracting predators, females only come to their nest at dusk and dawn to feed and groom their babies. A young rabbit, chipmunk-sized or bigger, is completely independent of its mother and should be left alone.

 Cottontails have a very low tolerance for stress and when kept in captivity, they very often die. Nests are often in the middle of the yard in what seems like a “bad” place but do not move the rabbits, as the mother probably won’t be able to find them. Cottontails regularly survive growing up in a typical suburban yard even with dangers like cats, kids and even dogs.
Infant Eastern Fox Squirrel

In the case of baby squirrels, which are also among the wildlife offspring you'll see in the fall, it’s not uncommon for young squirrels to show a lack of fear of humans. Even if they run right up to you, this doesn’t mean they need your help! Let them continue learning to be wild. You can help them learn a necessary and healthy fear of humans by clapping or making other loud noises to send them on their way. In fact, “What to do about friendly baby squirrels?” is Number 5 on our Frequently Asked Wildlife Rehab Questions list.

If a squirrel’s eyes are not open yet, you can secure an artificial nest to the tree using a tupperware container with holes in the bottom. Mom is able to retrieve her babies and take them back to the nest. An artificial nest can help protect the baby until it can be located by mom.

-Amy LeMonds, Wildlife Rehabilitation Coordinator

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Celebrate the Bay Bicentenial With Us!

As Bay Village prepares to celebrate its Bicentennial on October 10, 2010, Lake Erie Nature & Science Center (which has been an important nonprofit resource in the community for 60 of those 200 years) will showcase the natural history of the area with a variety of fun events. Our own history will be on display throughout the Bicentennial weekend through photos and mementos.

Activities at the Center also include a guided, adult History Hike through Huntington Reservation at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, October 6 (which requires pre-registration at $5 per adult) and a free, family-friendly live animal program focusing on the history of wildlife in the area on Saturday, October 9 at 3 p.m.

We plan to make a big splash in the Sunday, October 10, Bicentennial Parade, entering a 100-foot snake that takes 20 people to march down the street. Families are invited to drop in on Saturday, October 9 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. to enjoy free crafts including animal masks that they can wear in the parade.

Visitors to the Center can also enter the Women’s Board raffle to win a handcrafted Bicentennial Dollhouse. The 1810-2010 Dollhouse is on display and raffle tickets are sale at the Center’s Welcome Desk from now until the drawing on Sunday, October 10.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Discover the Cosmos Sparkles in Spite of Showers

In spite of early evening showers, the stars were shining on Saturday night at Lake Erie Nature & Science Center. Our 20th Annual Benefit  invited guests to Discover the Cosmos and more than 300 guests did just that, greeted with sparkling out-of-this-world d├ęcor, an astronaut photo favor station and their first signature Cosmo of the night inside the Center’s planetarium.

Guests dined on an amazing array of heavy tapas from around the world by Constantino’s Market and desserts from a host of local bakeries and eateries: Delightful Bites, Fragapane, Great Scott’s, Java Bay, Kathy’s Kolacke Shop, Lucy’s Sweet Surrender, Mojo’s, Nature’s Bin, Seballos and Sweet Melissa’s. A stellar silent auction and the cool, cosmic sounds of live music trio Bob Blankenburg, David Bruns and Tom Demis rounded out the entertainment.

Benefit Committee Amanda DiBenedetto, Corryn Firis,
Marianna Orro (Co-chair), Chris Herbruck & Alison Muth (Co-chair)
Discover the Cosmos!, our nonprofit Center’s biggest fundraising event of the year, was co-chaired by Alison Muth and Marianna Orro, with committee support from Amanda DiBenedetto, Corryn Firis and Christopher Herbruck. DiBenedetto was the force behind the decorations that included silver candlelit trees adorned with crystal ornaments and thousands of twinkle lights inside and out. She also pulled together artists of all ages to interpret our Solar System in a variety of media, with 20% of the sales benefiting the Center. Firis headed up a live auction that featured more than 85 exciting packages from great getaways and sports tickets to spa treatments and an archaeological dig. Herbruck led the Board’s goal-topping underwriting efforts.

Partygoers also participated in raffles to win two Continental Airlines round trip tickets, Sterling silver Chamilia charm bracelet from Charles S. Rivchun and Sons, a “Wild for Nature” quilt handmade by Dale Pizer Williams and Viva Pizer, plus two wheelbarrows full of beer, wine and spirits donated by Center staff and Board.

The evening raises funds to support AND focuses attention on the mission of the Center -- the planetarium, live wildlife and nature and science educational programs --and is all made possible through the generosity of invidividuals and businesses who give time and financial support.

Thanks to everyone!! Check out our Facebook album for 38 additional photos of the event.