Wildlife rehabilitators finish up symposium
Wildlife rehabilitators from across the nation left South Shore Saturday with more knowledge of their field and a glimpse into the beauty of Lake Tahoe.
Participants of the National Wildlife Rehabilitators Association Symposium filled the Horizon Casino Resort conference center for five days.
“This has been one of the better symposiums,” said Pam Lippert, a rehabilitator from Illinois. “It’s been good to network with people from all over the country, and they couldn’t have picked a more beautiful city. The view looking out the window of our hotel room is just like a postcard.”
More than 450 wildlife rehabilitators from 42 states, and Alberta and Ontario, Canada, took part in workshops and lectures addressing the rehabilitation of creatures ranging from reptiles to birds and mammals.
Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care hosted the 19th annual event to much praise.
“Everybody has been very happy with the location and they loved the (Heavenly Ski Resort) gondola,” said Cheryl Millham, executive director of Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care. “Everyone has been saying ‘Lake Tahoe is the friendliest place, and the cruise on the Dixie was beautiful.’ “
Heavenly offered discounted gondola rides and about 10 local restaurants gave symposium guests 10 percent discounts.
Elaine Thrune, president of the Minnesota-based National Wildlife Rehabilitators Association, said the symposiums are designed to present rehabilitators with the information needed to do the best job getting injured animals back into the wild and facilitate necessary networking.
“The response has been excellent,” Thrune said. “We’ve got such a variety of events available to meet everyone’s interests.”
The wildlife association encompasses about 2,000 rehabilitators from the United States and Canada who work out of wildlife centers and some out of their homes. Members include biologists, educators, naturalists, environmentalists and veterinarians among people from several other professions.
The association provides educational programs to more than 70 million people each year in an effort to reduce harmful effects on native wildlife.
More than 75 percent of rehabilitated animals have been injured because of human activities, according to the wildlife association.
The association also provides information, advice, and referrals, and offers grants for studies in wildlife medicine, animal behavior, nutrition and toxicology.
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After a period of dry, warm weather, winter returns this week to Lake Tahoe.