Here is a true story that I encountered in my back yard the other night. July 18th at 1:30 AM. I awoke to this awful noise in my backyard. My bedroom is at the front of the house and this noise was so loud,it was coming from my backyard. I have a certified backyard habitat which I did back in 2003 I think it was. Through the certification program at Canadian Wildlife Federation. I highly recommend this program and promote it as well. No matter were you live or how big OR little your backyard is. House or appartment. You can do this. Providing much needed habitat ( food,water,shelter )for our wildlife friends of all kinds when their habitat is disappearing so quickly around us. Because of us. A small thing to do. And such a rewarding thing to do as well. I have all my woodpecker friends every year now bring their babies to us. Pileated,red headed,red bellied,hairy,downy and yellow bellied sapsuckers. And so many songbirds. It is awesome. Of coarse I am in a semi roural place as well so I do get raccoons ,skunks,chipmunks and squirrels. We have had a moose out front on the road,a coyote walk down the road,wild turkeys,mallards ducks,deer,and foxes. But that is where I live and why I live here. So I suggest you go to CWF's web page and check that out. You will not be sorry you did.
Now back to my story. I dawned a flashlight. And wandered out back to find out what it was that was crying so much and so loudly in desparation. I am thinking ( what am I doing out here at this hour ). But the loud cries made me determined. We have 2 ponds in this area. One for the goldfish and one shallow with a fountain for the critters to drink and bathe in. My thought was that something amy have fallen in the pond maybe. I opened the gate to the pond area. A lovely arbour with a beautiful vine is my entrance to this wildlife sancuary of mine. My peaceful get away area I spend many hours in or watching from my window. And there it was. A wee baby raccoon. It cried and cried. I spoke softly to it. My wildlife photography work has put me into a situation many time to sit amongst the babes. Patience and quietness is the key. I put myself in this little ones space,quietly,and spoke softly. Time does not matter when I am in their world. Only the peace and quiet and gentleness of the moment matters. This baby needed comforting. I was there. It calmed down. I assumed as it wandered off into the back of my yard that it would find it's momma. It didn't.
The next night. As I was out back watching the other 3 of 5 babies that were older now and had been orphaned playing in the tree. They were doing well. 2 I am hopeing have wondered off on their own now. But unless they show up again ( which I am hopefull they will ). I will never know there fate. As I watched in amazement. The hours of entertainment has been marvelous from these babes. I noticed this little tiny ball in the crook of the tree above the older babes. My instant thought was. That baby didn't find it's mother. It needed help. I got a better look at it of coarse in the day light. It was tiny,hungry and dehydrated. And it started to cry again when it saw me. It crawled to the other older babes. But they backed off and grumbled at it. It of coarse grumbled back as it was scared. The older but still babes themselves raccoons didn't know what to make of this little thing that was seeking them out. It went back up the tree. I spoke softly to it to try to get it down. And it kept trying to come to me. But kept getting to a point it was unsure of and went back up. My hubby on standby to hop the fence and grab it. I shook some kibble to hopefully attract it. But it didn't relate to that as it was to little.
Well darkness set in. Mark missed his chance. It came down but was very fast at going back up. We went in. I was very upset and fearful for it's survival. 30 min. later I heard it's cries. We rushed out. A male raccon who will kill a baby. Was confronting it. It was crying. And he backed it up right into our big pond. I heard the plunk as it went in. We rushed over. Male ran off. And Mark grabbed it up quickly. It's back end was in and it was hanging on for dear life. Oh how it squealed the poor thing. Cage was ready. We got it!!! 10PM. Oh how releaved we were. I called Helen. She guided me through and an early morning trip was awaiting me and the babe. I warmed blankets in the dryer. It snuggled in right away. I thought it would cry all night. But it slept like a baby. Ate it's 3 slices of chopped banana and teaspoon of yogurt. Tipped up it's water. ( probably trying to wash it's little hands). 6:30 AM we were off to it's new mom. Fran took me up as I was not sure of the directions. And the babe would soon get a much needed meal. It was dehydrated and hungry. It was scared and lost. To young to be out on it's own. It was out looking for Mom. Who was gone. The only one that apparently survived from that litter. She will be fine now.
After 2 days she accepted her new mom with a little more quietness and ease. She was so scared at first and unsure. I can't think of anyone else I would rather see her with except for her real Mom than Helen. A very amazing woman who will love her and care for her as best she can like the babes own Mom would. Totally amazing job. What a precious little baby girl. I do not know what happened to her mother. This is mom # 2 that has disappeared. #1 was killed by a dog up the street. This little baby made it's way into the real world to find her momma. I can only wonder, were there any more!!