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Keep wildlife wild

Posted April 20, 2017

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owl sitting on someone's arm in a classroom
This baby owl was taken to the Fort Worth Animal Shelter by a resident. The owlet was later taken to a wildlife sanctuary to be cared for.

It’s hard for anyone to resist “rescuing” a baby rabbit, bird or other young wildlife that ends up in a local park or a backyard this time of year. When a wild baby seems helpless or abandoned, you want to help. But most wild babies are not helpless or abandoned. In fact, most people who think they are rescuing the infant actually cause more harm.

Every spring, Fort Worth’s Animal Care & Control Division receives infants at the shelter along with numerous phone calls from people who ask animal control officers to rescue newfound young. What many people don’t know is that most newborn wildlife is best left alone. The parents are likely nearby, but you can’t see them. Adult wildlife very rarely abandon their young.

“The single most important thing to learn is to not touch or interfere with the infant wildlife,” said Tim Morton, a veterinarian and assistant director in Code Compliance.

“My team and I urge people to avoid contact with young raccoons, coyotes, bats or skunks because these animals are high-risk carriers of rabies in Texas,” Morton said.

Humans can never be a substitute for wild animal parents, and more often than not, leaving a young animal alone gives it the best chance for survival. Young animals taken into captivity lose their natural instincts and ability to survive in the wild.

If you’re sure that an animal has been orphaned, or if it’s noticeably injured, call or email the city’s customer call center at 817-392-1234.

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Calendar

Aviation Advisory Board - Revised: 4 p.m. April 19, 2018; Fort Worth Meacham International Airport, 201 American Concourse.
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Trinity River Public Facility Corporation: 5 p.m. April 19, 2018; Fort Worth Housing Solutions Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th Street.
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Fort Worth Housing Solutions Board Regular Meeting: 5 p.m. April 19, 2018; Fort Worth Housing Solutions, Adminstrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th Street.
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Fort Worth Affordability Inc.: 5 p.m. April 19, 2018; Fort Worth Housing Solutions, Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th Street.
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2018 Bond Meeting: 6:30 p.m. April 19, 2018; R.D. Evans Community Center, 3242 Lackland Rd..

Minority and Women Business Enterprise Advisory Committee: 11:30 a.m. April 20, 2018; James E. Guinn Building, 1st Floor, PharmaFab Conference Room 116, 1150 South Freeway.
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PeopleSpring Networking Luncheon: 11:30 a.m. April 20, 2018; James E. Guinn Entrepreneurial Campus, IDEA Works FW, 600 E. Rosedale St.
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Crud Cruiser Mobile Waste Collection: 9 a.m. April 21, 2018; Casino Beach Park , 7451 Watercress Drive.

Walking or Caffeinated Town Hall: 10 a.m. April 21, 2018; To be determined.

Crud Cruiser Mobile Waste Collection: noon April 21, 2018; Diamond Hill Community Center , 1701 NE 36th St.

Building Standards Commission Pre-Meeting: 9 a.m. April 23, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.
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Building Standards Commission Public Hearing: 9:30 a.m. April 23, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Chambers, 200 Texas Ave.
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Trinity Metro Board of Directors: 3:30 p.m. April 23, 2018; Intermodal Transportation Center, 2nd Floor, Community Room, 1001 Jones Street.
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Kimbo Road Project Meeting: 6 p.m. April 23, 2018; Bonnie Brae Elementary, 3504 Kimbo Road.

2018 Bond Meeting: 6:30 p.m. April 23, 2018; UCC Polytechnic Center, 3100 Avenue I.

Summerfield Maintence Project Meeting: 6:30 p.m. April 23, 2018; Summerglen Library, 4205 Basswood Blvd.

Disciplinary Appeal of the Termination of Jesse Puga: 9 a.m. April 24, 2018; City Hall Annex, 6th Floor, Training Room 623, 908 Monroe Street.
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Race and Culture Leadership Training: 9 a.m. April 24, 2018; Bob Bolen Public Safety Complex, Multipurpose Room, 501 West Felix Street.
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Canceled City Council Work Session: 3 p.m. April 24, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.

Trinity Metro Notice of Public Hearing: 6 p.m. April 24, 2018; Dunbar High School Auditorium, 5700 Ramey Avenue.
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Canceled City Council Meeting: 7 p.m. April 24, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Chambers, 200 Texas Street.

City Plan Commission Work Session: noon April 25, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.

View the full city calendar.