‘Hoo’ Haven Wildlife Rehabilitation Center expands nursery

DURAND—Federally and state licensed wildlife rehabilitation facility, “Hoo” Haven Inc., recently received a $1,000 grant from the Gannett Foundation. This generous grant was used to purchase equipment for the wildlife nursery and intensive care areas. Equipment, including humidity and heat-controlled incubators, digital scales and specialized training perches are necessary to hand-rear wildlife orphans and to treat sick animals.

“Each spring and fall, Hoo Haven experiences ‘baby season’ with a large influx of baby birds, squirrels, bunnies, opossums, raccoons, woodchucks and fawns who are either orphaned or believed to be orphaned,” said Karen Herdklotz, Hoo Haven founder and director. “We appreciate this partnership with the Gannett Foundation as we work to preserve our wildlife population and maintain a healthy ecosystem.”

Hoo Haven is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that rehabilitated nearly 600 animals in 2003 alone; nearly half of these were newborns, and most were successfully treated and released back to their natural habitats. To help Hoo Haven during peak “baby season,” local Girl Scouts recently hosted a “Wildlife Baby Shower” benefit and raised an additional $1,000 for the wildlife nursery. Guests had the opportunity to view newborn animals in the incubators purchased by the Gannett Foundation.

Recently, Hoo Haven admitted its first American bald eagle, found injured on the Mississippi River near Savanna, Ill. Hoo Haven is working with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service to rehabilitate this adult eagle. The bird appears to have an eye injury and impaired vision. Hoo Haven seeks donations from area fishermen who would like to donate a portion of their catch. For additional information on wildlife rehabilitation, education programs, donations or volunteer opportunities, please contact Karen Herdklotz at (815) 629-2212 after 7 p.m. or visit Web site www.hoohaven.org.

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