Since I moved to Pinckney nearly three years ago I have been wanting to do some volunteer work at the Howell Nature Center, which is only about 10 minutes from my home. Lori and I finally decided to sign up for cage cleaning in their Wild Wonders exhibit, which contains animals that are not releasable to the wild, due either to injury or to being imprinted (made tame, esentially).
Sandhill crane, scratchin' an itch.
We chose three cages: the Sandhill Cranes, of course, since they've become my favorite bird; the Snowy Owl, an amazingly beautiful bird and one not seen much around here; and the rough-legged hawk, a bird that was removed from its nest and raised by a woman illegally.
I enjoy being near the animals and also enjoy hard work, so the cage cleaning suits me. I will be able to get some really good photos too, but for now I just took our little Nikon to get some snapshots.
Rough-legged hawk, male
I also do volunteer work for the DNR doing invasive species removal, and the three of us at Bear Track Studios have sort of adopted a trail in the Brighton Rec Area that we monitor for invasive species. It's a good impetus for getting out, getting some excersise, and feeling like we're doing some good in the process.
Snowy owl, female
If you have any extra time in your day, think about volunteering. Even if it's just an hour or two a week, your help can make a big difference.