My kids, like most kids, love nature and wildlife. They are always picking up bugs, frogs, snakes – anything they can catch. Recently we were in Florida, and had to spend at least 20 minutes each day tracking little anoles in the bushes. So, when I saw the Ohio Wildlife Center was offering a family day, I was all over it.
The Ohio Wildlife Center has family days at various times throughout the year. In June it was Birds & Blooms. It was only $5 per person (all proceeds are used to help animals that come to the hospital or their center), and they had stations set up and animals to pet or see up close. Some of the animals could be touched and others were available for viewing. My kids learned about the different kinds of birds in Ohio, coyotes,and raccoons; but mostly, they learned how important it is to respect wildlife.
Many animals at the center will remain there forever, mostly because of humans. I guess humans go so far as to take baby animals from their homes and try to raise them as their own pet. For example, an American Kestral was found extremely malnourished and eating french fries in a Burger King parking lot. The human couldn’t care for it any longer and just let it loose. (Note: American Kestral is a small falcon and needs to eat mice and other types of meat, not fried fast food.) I don’t think humans are trying to be awful to the animals, I just think some people are not educated about how important it is to leave wildlife to nature. Sure, they are super cute, but they are wild.
We learned that it is okay to put baby birds back in their nest if they fall out. The mama bird will still take care of it. That is not what I thought was fact all my life, and was very happy to learn that tidbit of info.
They have a number of birds such as owls, hawks, and turkeys in pins outside. Inside the center are reptiles and amphibians, and lots of informational displays. Outside they also have coyotes, fox, and raccoons. It is the neatest place. They also do workshops, host summer and winter camps for kids, and other types of educational programs for Scouts and adult and kid groups.
Be sure to check out their calendar of events: www.ohiowildlifecenter.org/event/
Ohio Wildlife Center
6131 Cook Rd, Powell, OH 43065