The first speaker was Susan Brandt, founder of Rational Animal, an organization whose mission is to increase public awareness of at risk animals in New York City. They hold an annual winter fundraiser called Gingerbread Homes for Animals fund medical care for homeless animals. They also organize benefit concerts, developed a map showing New Yorkers where to find pets in need of adoption called Trails to Tails, produce public service announcements, and run an orange ribbon campaign. The kids at the program received orange ribbons.
After Susan's talk, we headed out to the Ramble to meet wildlife rehabilitator Bobby Horvath and his animal friends.
WARNING: LOTS OF PHOTOS AHEAD!
This Eastern Screech Owl had a broken collarbone and can't be released back into the wild.
Diana the Redtailed Hawk is fifteen years old. She eats rodents and pigeons.
This Peregrine Falcon was hungry and demanded his lunch loudly! Peregrines are primarily bird-eaters. They have a notched beak for biting the neck of their prey to disable it. JFK Airport uses Peregrines to hunt pigeons and other birds which are a menace to aviation.
This little raccoon was car sick and not in the mood for show and tell, so he stayed in his carrier. He is partially blind and has been since birth. Raccoons are not purely nocturnal. It is fairly common to see them during the day, especially in the spring when nursing mothers need lots of food to produce adequate milk for their young.
The skunk was sweet and good natured and safe to be around since it was de-scented and kept illegally as a pet.
After the program, we hiked the Ramble and did some bird watching. Then we hopped on the subway and went to Moon Rock Diner for dinner. They have yummy veggie pannini.
Mikro entertained us by making goofy faces while we ate...