Thomasville Times Enterprise

Local News

January 14, 2014

Helping Animals 101

THOMASVILLE — If you’ve ever seen an injured animal along the side of the road and wished you could help, Chet Powell has a class for you.

The Georgia Wildlife Rescue Association, which Powell founded, will sponsor “Basic Care and Procedure for Injured or Orphaned Wildlife” on Saturday, Feb. 8, in the Health Science Buliding Lecture Hall (B Building) at Southwest Georgia Technical College. The course is designed to train volunteers, Powell said, but it’s also a requirement for anyone wanting to become a wildlife rehabilitator.

“Our goal is to expand our statewide network of volunteers who can respond to reports of injured or orphaned animals anywhere in Georgia,” he said. “For instance, a call comes in about a baby bobcat in Clayton County, we go down our volunteer list for that county until we find someone who can respond, and that person will go to the location, safely secure the animal in a carrier and then transport it to the nearest rehabber that is licensed for that species. It would obviously be better to have multiple people in each county to call on in the event that the first person is unavailable.”

Powell said this will be an intensive all-day class that will be divided into sessions with some of the most experienced and knowledgeable people in the world of wildlife rehabilitation. Sessions include:

• Small mammals.

• Large mammals.

• Raptors (hawks, owls, eagles, etc.).

• Sea Birds, waterfowl and wading birds.

• Songbirds, woodland birds, etc.

• Turtles and tortoises.

• Other reptiles and amphibians.

Participants will include:

• Lorraine Conklin of The Androcles Society.

• Jennifer Gordon of Carolina Waterfowl Rescue.

• Amanda Margraves of Florida Keys Wild Bird Center.

• John Denton of Georgia Department of Natural Resources.

• Dr. Terry Norton and other staff from the Georgia Sea Turtle Center.

• Powell, Dr. Jay Whitesell and Jennifer Glover of the GWRA.

• Sharon Poitevint of Southwest Georgia Technical College.

• Stephanie Neumann and Sandy Beck of St. Francis Wildlife Association.

• A representative of the US Fish and Wildlife Service.

Sarah Kilgore, marketing and public relations manager for Southwest Georgia Tech, said the college is excited to host the class.

“We have a veterinary tech program now,” she said. “… We have a vested interest in the health and well-being of animals in our community.”

The cost is $40 for GWRA members and $60 for non-members. Pre-registration is required due to limited space. To register or for more information, visit www.georgiawildliferescue.org.

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