Sunday, December 29, 2013

Our Christmas javelina story

On Christmas Eve, a javelina was killed by predator(s) in our driveway.  Fur and blood everywhere, stomach contents and part of an internal organ laying off to the side, but no carcass evident.   None of the ten of us having dinner 50 feet away heard anything.

Christmas morning a young javelina wandered slowly up the path to the tiny plot of grass outside our back door. Wildlife around the house is pretty typical.  We back up to the Tucson Mountain Regional Park and our 50 square feet of grass often serves as a summer oasis for a range of birds and mammals.

This time the javelina curled up and spent the day dozing in the sun.  It wasn't until late that night that it got up and unsteadily wandered off.  Thursday, Friday, and Saturday were a repeat.  A few times it went down to the driveway to the area where the other javelina had been killed. The youngster was slow and unsteady, eyes seemingly closed.     My wife Ann consulted with one of the local animal rescue groups who agreed that the animal needed help.

On Saturday, our neighbor Noreen, who volunteers with animal rescue groups, left a family gathering to come over with a small pet carrier and lured it in with a piece of carrot.  She took it to Northwest Animal Center where they put it in a small pen with food, water, and heat lamp for the night.   It should be transferred to Tucson Animal Rescue today.

Noreen says the plan is to help it recover, introduce it to a small group of other javelina in the shelter, then release a herd of them together to the wild again.

Our thanks to Noreen and all the other tireless volunteers who contribute so much to preserving our wildlife.

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