Putting the "MO" in MOFO since 2004

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Friday, June 03, 2005


Animal rescue at the raptor center

At my mother's birthday dinner last night, my partially laid off systems engineer, partially retired, partially selling guns at the local sporting goods store father mentioned that he was thinking of volunteering at the raptor center at the University of MN. I remember the raptor center because about 5 years ago I found a baby chickadee and tried to raise it until it was able to live on it's own. I poked holes in a carboard box to make him a house and I bought cat food for him just like the vet told me to. I painstakingly gave him water from a tiny spoon. I took him out and let him hop around my apartment and sat him on my chest so he would not get cold. He was a sweet little brown baby birdie. I took time out of my wine swilling, camel light smoking twenty-something lifestyle to try to give the little guy a shot in life.
About 24 hours into my plan, I realized my baby bird was not doing so well. Instead of hop hop hopping he was limp limp limping. Sideways. I decided to try to take him somewhere where they might be able to help him so I called the raptor center. They told me that they took in animals in need of rescue and I brought him in.
In the waiting room there was a cute little boy with his parents. They had a little family of baby bunnies they had discovered while mowing the lawn. They were adorable. The family and the bunnies.
They called my name, took a look at the bird and said that he did not look good, but they would do what they could. They said they would try to call to let me know how he ended up.
I never did hear from them and I always wondered if that little guy made it. This is my memory of the raptor center. A place where they rescue wild little creatures who end up in the wrong place at the wrong time.
When I said to my father "Oh, yeah. I remember the raptor center. I rescued a baby bird and brought him there". My father looked at me, amused and impatient, and said
"Meghan, it's the RAPTOR center. What do you think they do with baby birds? They feed them to raptors!". He sat back looking rather pleased with himself.
"No Dad" I said. "they rescued animals. I know this because there was also a family who brought in rescued baby bunnies!"
My father looked at me like I just told him I still beleived in Santa Claus.
"They probably fed the bunnies to an owl. What do you think owls eat in the wild? ".
I covered my ears with my hands.
"STOP! Stop right now!"
This was the end of our conversation about the raptor center.
Why the Hell would anyone want to volunteer there?


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