Normally, squirrels don’t start arriving at Wild ARC until late-April, but the manager says the team has been looking after baby squirrels for several weeks already.
Right now, there are 19 squirrels being taken care of, including three Eastern Grey Squirrels with broken legs.
Two of the squirrels fell out of their nest in a wind storm, and the third fell when its home tree was cut down, according to Ginelle Smith, manager of Wild ARC.
“These guys ended up having broken legs when they arrived, there were other squirrels that came with them, some of their siblings that we tried to reunite with mom but mom was nowhere around so they are also in care,” Smith said, noting seven of their siblings were brought in.
“But these guys had broken legs. So we’ve casted them up and they’re healing nicely. They aren’t too bad, they’re young enough as well that they’ve got a pretty good chance of recovery.”
Smith says if all goes well, they should be ready to be released in three to four months.
Of the 19 squirrels in care at Wild ARC, Smith says all but the two who fell out of the tree in the wind storm were brought in due to trees being cut down.
“Please, please look in the branches before you’re cutting them. Right now is the time of year that there’s a lot of nests in the trees, it’s spring,” Smith said. “Please if you’re going to fall a tree, if you’re going to build a house, if you’re going to be a developer, please have your tree fallers inspect the trees before you take them down. There is a very good chance there’s going to be animals in there this time of year yeah.”
Normally this time of year, Smith says they have a large number of baby birds, but this year they’ve had more squirrels which they wouldn’t usually start receiving until about now, and very few birds.
“Normally in Wild ARC, you start hearing chirping constantly going on in the halls, and there’s only a little bit right now,” Smith said. “We’re really busy with squirrels and yeah, they usually come you know, mid to late April or May, but we had them in March.”
On top of putting casts and splints on the squirrels with broken legs, they are also needing to be fed four times a day.
“It’s always squirrel feeding time around here these days,” Smith joked.
Wild ARC is accepting donations for the care of the three squirrels, which is estimated to cost the organization $1,733 to fully rehabilitate them.