April 22, 2016 9:39 pm
Updated: April 23, 2016 12:09 am

B.C. wildlife shelter needs help caring for animal orphans

WATCH: This year's warm weather means at least one wildlife rehabilitation centre in B.C. is dealing with an influx in orphans arriving ahead of schedule. Linda Aylesworth explains.

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ABBOTSFORD, B.C. – The record-breaking warm temperatures we’ve been enjoying this spring come at a price, and Elizabeth’s Wildlife Center in Abbotsford has been paying for it in spades.

Normally, only a few orphaned or injured babies would be coming in for her help this early. But the facility’s founder, Elizabeth Melnick, has been working all out for over a month already. It’s tough because she relies on volunteers to help care for the animals and depends on donations to pay for her tiny patients’ medicine and food.

“It is mind-boggling between the phone ringing and the incoming animals. We can get 20 to 25 animals a day – some critical, so they require a lot of care and tube feeds and shots.”

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Melnick has been doing this kind of work for more than 30 years, so there are few emergencies she can’t handle. But she admits she is a bit unnerved about what is to come if this baby boom trend continues.

“The baby birds haven’t started coming in yet. When they do, it will be horrible, because some need feeding every 15 minutes [for] a minimum of 14 to 16 hours a day… and we can have 30, 40, 50 in at the same time.”

Melnick is looking for committed and reliable volunteers, as well as donations to pay for the animals’ food and medicine. If you would like to know more about how you can help, check out her website.

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