A raccoon tiptoeing near our campfire the other night surprised and delighted all of the volunteers gathered for a hot dog roast at Imperial National Wildlife Refuge. For years we’ve seen raccoon tracks, and occasionally we catch a glimpse of one. But, unlike other raccoons on the Refuge, this animal lingered, obviously not shy around people.
Two weeks ago we learned that the great horned owl that had been stung by a giant hairy scorpion had been transferred from raptor rehabilitator Dr. George Montopoli, professor of mathematics with Arizona Western College (AWC) in Yuma, to Dr. Cecilia Vigil, doctor of veterinary medicine and biology professor also at AWC. Recently we met with Dr. Vigil at the college to be briefed on the owl’s progress.
Not long ago, a great horned owl was brought to Imperial National Wildlife Refuge’s visitor center suffering from what Refuge biologist Joe Barnett thought might have been a sting from a giant hairy scorpion. Today we visited with George Montopoli, the rehabilitator who took in and nursed the owl.
Although our passion is reptiles, we love all animals, especially dogs. Dogs offer certain benefits that cold-blooded creatures cannot. And we recently discovered another of those advantages.
With a decrease in fossorial (burrowing) animals, burrowing owls are finding fewer places to nest. This week we joined a group that has been working with Wild at Heart, inc., (burrowing owl relocation) to create artificial nesting sites for burrowing owls at Cibola National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) a couple hours north of Imperial NWR in Arizona.