Wildlife Rehab Centre in need of help

Christine Wood/Staff Writer / Staff writer
January 11, 2013 01:00 AM

Irene and Clint Davy of Gibsons Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre with their resident barred owl Whoover. The owl with just one eye is used to help educate students about wildlife when the couple is invited into a school. The Davys are in need of more help at the centre and more donations to continue offering rehabilitation services to sick and injured wild animals on the Coast.

Clint and Irene Davy of Gibsons Wildlife Rehab Centre have been rescuing and rehabilitating sick and injured animals on the Coast for 25 years, but now they find themselves in need.

Each year the centre responds to more than 3,000 calls and rehabilitates hundreds of wild animals that would otherwise suffer or die from their injuries.

It's a full-time job that was taken on by the Davys when they opened the centre at their home in Gibsons in 1988. For the most part, they have been able to handle the influx of feathered, scaly and furry patients.

However, last year, Clint became a patient himself, in need of multiple surgeries and much rehabilitation time at home.

The loss of the centre's number-one volunteer quickly took its toll. In order to keep up with the calls for service, the Davys had to hire some part-time help. It's the first time they've ever had to do so.

That extra help is costing them $20,000 a year, which significantly ups their need for donations. Usually the centre runs with a budget of $40,000 a year, and all of the money comes from the public.

"Normally our annual donations probably don't quite meet our budget expenditures anyway, but we have been fortunate to get, over the years, one or two legacies to help us out. They don't last forever, though," Irene noted.

In addition to needing more funding to make it through 2013, the Davys are in need of more volunteers who can come out and help at the centre daily. Recently they lost a handful of helpers they used to count on.

On any given day, the Davys like to have two volunteers working inside, two outside and one doing dishes and prepping food.

They currently have dozens of birds inside and in an outside atrium that are being taken care of, and each different bird requires a different diet.

"You have to make the food specifically for them. We use things like fish, fruit and seeds to make up the meals. It's something you can't just buy from the store. It takes time each day to prepare," Irene noted.

It also takes time and effort to clean the cages of animals in care, which is another daily chore volunteers are needed for.

If you would like to help the Davys with time or money, call 604-886-4989 or email gibsonswildlife@gmail.com. You can find out more about the Coast's only wildlife rehabilitation centre at www.gibsonswildliferehabcentre.org.

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