Spring is in the air, and ticks are all around!
April 1, 2016
Spring really is the best time to come visit, despite the pests, mowers, and weed eaters. The weather is not too hot, not too cold, the cats are a little more active, the bears are coming out of ‘sleep’ mode, and the scenery is breath-taking. Many of our cats are also a little more ‘friendly’ in the spring time. You will be treated with more vocal animals when you visit in the spring and early summer time.
We do not breed our animals at Turpentine Creek. If males and females share a habitat, then the males are ALWAYS neutered. The sights and sounds of Turpentine Creek come alive this time of year and we invite everyone to come out and enjoy the refuge. But, we do want to let you know about a few things you might hear and see at Turpentine Creek if you come during the spring and summer months.
We sometimes comment that the area around our property is a ‘tick habitat’. Ticks are a massive problem in our area and threaten the lives of our amazing animals. Just a few years ago, a few of our cats died due to ticks. Many Arkansas ticks carry Cytauxzoon Felis, also known as bobcat fever, which will kill a domestic cat and a full grown tiger within days!
After the death of some of our wonderful animals, we began to treat for ticks in and around our habitats. We are very careful when treating for ticks, treating the habitats when the cats are in their night house, and sticking to a strict treatment schedule. Unlike your domestic cat at home we cannot put flea and tick medication directly on our cats so we must treat the area they live in.
We have also begun weed eating our habitats to reduce the likely hood of ticks living there. Although we would love to allow our habitats to grow tall and have that ‘jungle’ feel, that is just a breeding ground for ticks, fleas, and other pests that could make our animals sick. So, if you come visit during the summer expect the lovely hum of mowers and weed eaters all day, every day.
It is a lot of work but we do it because we love the animals here and don’t want them to get sick. Due to this extra workload, we are also in need of more volunteers to help lighten the workload. Volunteers cannot go into the habitats to weed eat/mow but they can do other tasks that will free up time for staff/interns so that they can weed eat/mow (please visit our volunteer page on our website if you are interested in volunteering.)
You should not have any issues with ticks as long as you stay in the designated areas, we treat these areas as well. So do come for a visit, it is an experience of a life time!