Volunteers at Critter Care rehabilitate injured or orphaned raccoons and return them to the wild. (Langley Advance Times files)

Langley wildlife centre desperate for caregivers

Critter Care is in need of co-op students as COVID curtails number of international interns

A plea has gone out for animal lovers who want to co-parent some of the wildlife being rehabilitated in Langley this fall and winter.

Critter Care Wildlife Society relies heavily on volunteers to care for the plethora of animals – everything from black bears and river otters, to beaver, skunks, raccoons, squirrels, and fawns – that come in to care at the 216th Street facility during the year.

The non-profit charity rehabilitates injured and orphaned native wild mammal species. Since its inception in 1984, the centre has seen a steady growth, year after year, in the numbers of animals that come into care. And according to a plea issued on Facebook, there are more than 2,000 animals a year now admitted – about 75 to 80 per cent of those being babies.

Like so many organizations, Critter Care has felt the direct impact of COVID. Due to the pandemic, the participation of dozens of out-of-country interns is virtually impossible, said founder Gail Martin.

In past, the centre has relied heavily on people from around the globe who commit to living on site for a minimum of a month – usually more – to tend to and often co-parent orphaned wildlife. Their duties have included feeding and caring for the animals as well as attending wildlife rescues.

It’s an opportunity to gain valuable insight on conservation and rehab for native mammal species, Martin said.

To help work around COVID, and the limitations imposed on international travel, the centre also offers what it calls a co-op program – which facilities the participation of local people, Martin explained.

While the internships are offered to people who lives on site full-time temporarily to provide around-the-clock care for animals, those taking part in the co-op program do not live on site.

The co-op students, however, must dedicates to working four to five days a week (8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.) to assist with day-to-day tasks and animal care.To find out more about the commitment required, visit the organization’s website.

During a “co-op-ship,” participants typically raise the animals – many from a few weeks old – and must also assist in the care, feeding, and supervision of the animals. They are also required to go on various rescues, and sometimes, Martin said, they have the option to go on a release and watch their grown babies get introduced into the wild.

“From our experience, interns gain valuable experiences working with our wildlife which sets them up for success in almost any industry they wish to pursue,” she added.

Spring is their busiest time of year, in baby season they typically have up to 25 interns and 10 co-op to care for hundreds of baby animals. But help is needed year-round.

“Critter Care is a charity and is not government funded and we solely operate off the generosity of our volunteers and sponsors,” Martin said.

”Critter Care has become a much-needed public service to the community, we slowly developed an education program for youth to teach them the fundamentals of our wild native mammal species and how we can coexist with wildlife. Young people love this program as they get to see a wild animal up close and learn basics skills not taught in schools.”

For more information about their programs and services, people can visit the Critter Care website.



Is there more to this story?

Email: news@langleyadvancetimes.com

Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter


animal welfareLangleyWildlife

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

John Horgan has been re-elected the MLA for Langford-Juan de Fuca. (File-Black Press)
Horgan trounces challengers to be re-elected in his Vancouver Island riding

MLA has represented constituency of Langford-Juan de Fuca and its predecessors since 2005

Students at Brookswood Secondary participated in Student Vote 2020. (Katie Glover/Special to Langley Advance Times)
PHOTOS: Students cast a ballot for Langley candidates

Brookswood Secondary participated in Student Vote 2020

Voting locations in Langley for the 2020 BC provincial election. (Google)
MAP: Voting locations in Langley

Sites will be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Aldergrove legion Branch 265 president Doug Hadley presents a poppy to Langley Township mayor Jack Froese. (Madeline Roach/Special to the Aldergrove Star)
Poppy sales begin at Aldergrove legion branch #265

Branch president Doug Hadley shared the poem Who is a Veteran to begin the time of remembrance

The number of new COVID-19 cases in the Fraser South region has doubled in the last two weeks. The number of cases in the Fraser East region has tripled.
Chart: Tyler Olsen
COVID-19 surge in B.C. fuelled by spikes in new cases in Fraser Valley & Surrey area

Number of newly confirmed cases has tripled in Fraser Valley and doubled in the Surrey/Langley area

B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry gives a daily briefing on COVID-19 cases at an almost empty B.C. Legislature press theatre in Victoria, B.C., on March 25, 2020. (Don Craig/B.C. government)
B.C. sees 223 new COVID-19 cases, now 2,009 active

Two new care home outbreaks in Surrey, Burnaby

Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam responds to a question during a news conference Friday October 23, 2020 in Ottawa. Canada’s top physician says she fears the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths may increase in the coming weeks as the second wave continues to drive the death toll toward 10,000. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s top doctor warns severe illness likely to rise, trailing spike in COVID-19 cases

Average daily deaths from virus reached 23 over the past seven days, up from six deaths six weeks ago

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

BC Hydro map showing where power has been knocked out is dotted with over a dozen outages. (BC Hydro map screenshot)
Thousands without power in Lower Mainland on election day

One outage in Langley and Surrey is affecting over 4,000 customers

One dead after fiery crash near Agassiz

Agassiz RCMP report a 56-year-old man died Friday night

100 Mile Conservation officer Joel Kline gingerly holds an injured but very much alive bald eagle after extracting him from a motorist’s minivan. (Photo submitted)
B.C. driver thought he retrieved a dead bald eagle – until it came to life in his backseat

The driver believed the bird to be dead and not unconscious as it turned out to be

Most Read