Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge has opened our hearts and refuge to a new female, white tiger named Payson. Payson was rehomed with us from Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium. The zoo contacted us looking for a new home for the 13-year-old Payson since they have decided to shift focus towards their Amur tiger species survival program.
“We are very excited to offer Payson a home with us! The zoo did what was best for Payson and the tiger species as a whole, since white tigers are not viable genetic candidates for the conservation of the species,” said Tanya Smith, President of TCWR.
The Henry Doorly Zoo decided to reach out to us during their search to rehome Payson, knowing that we would be able to offer her the same quality health care, attention, and love that they had given her. On February 7, 2018, Payson made the 430-mile journey to our refuge. She arrived in the afternoon and with only a little hesitation, transferred from her travel crate into her double night house area. She will spend a few days secured in the night house area for observation before she is given access to the large grassy habitat she will now call home.
We are glad that we could work with the Henry Doorly Zoo for this rehoming. We have been striving to foster better working relationships with zoos across the U.S. for years. We believe that zoos and sanctuaries will need work together to make sure that big cats in captivity are getting the best possible care. In the past, we have hosted a collaborative behavioral training workshop between zoos and sanctuaries, consulted with various zoos about animal health issues, and hope to continue to strengthen communicative efforts in the future.
Bobby the Bobcat was rescued from the state of Ohio in January. Bobby is a 17-year-old blind bobcat. When he first arrived he was put in the other half of Bowden the Serval’s habitat. They swapped days in the habitat. At first, Bobby was very shy, but as he got used to the sounds and smells around him he started to venture out into his habitat more often. On July 25th, we decided to move him and introduce him to Boo Boo, our other senior bobcat. Both Boo Boo and Bobby had spent most of their lives living with other bobcats. Our hope is that by introducing the two older bobcats, Bobby will grow more confident in his surroundings and socialize a bit more. The introduction went well. Bobby and Boo Boo sniffed each other and then went about their day, no growling was heard so they seemed to have accepted each other’s company.
Joy Coyote was given to Turpentine Creek in June, by a wildlife rehabilitator who believed that the melanistic Coyote would not be able to return to the wild. She had been rejected by her mother due to her coloring and being a sickly runt. Through the care of the rehabilitator, she was returned to health and given to Turpentine Creek. Joy has been given a clean bill of health by our veterinarian and has received 2 of her 3 sets of vaccinations. Once she receives her final set of vaccinations we plan to move her up from Rescue Ridge into the visitor area. She is still very wary of humans. Staff sees her exploring her current night house often, and she loves to dig in the dirt, but if someone approaches her habitat she quickly runs and hides in her den. Only time will tell if she becomes comfortable enough with the staff and interns to let us approach her habitat without running away.
Giselle the Serval was rescued in July. A woman, who is a pet food consultant with many veterinarians, noticed a baby Serval practically living at one of her client’s clinics. The Serval was front declawed and spayed by her owners. The original owners had 3 children under the age of 10 and through a series of unknown events Giselle broke one of her back legs. Finally, the woman approached the vet to see if the owners would relinquish the Serval to her. She is a supporter of Turpentine Creek and knew that if she could not care for the Serval then we could. The owners agreed to give up Giselle and within a week the woman contacted Turpentine Creek to see if we had space for Giselle. Upon arrival at Turpentine Creek, Giselle was housed at Rescue Ridge for a quarantine period. On July 25th, Giselle was moved up to the other half of Bowden the Serval’s habitat. She loves playing on the grass and climbing all over the habitat. The eventual goal is to introduce Bowden and Giselle so that they can both enjoy the habitat on a daily basis. For now, Giselle and Bowden alternate days while the two servals get to know each other’s scent. Giselle is very curious about Bowden but Bowden is still unsure about Giselle.
All three Rescues are doing well and settling into the Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge Family. We are glad that we can help take care of these three amazing animals. All three rescues are still in need of Adoptors. It is only through your support and help that we can continue to rescue animals in need. Click here to learn more about our adoption program.