A spike in the number of wild animals who need help has resulted in the province’s largest wildlife rehabilitation centre getting close to hanging a "no vacancy" sign.
The Wildlife Haven Rehabilitation Centre says there’s been a 21 per cent jump in the number of wild animals taken to its facility in Ile des Chenes this year.
"The unprecedented number of patients is the highest the charity has ever seen," the centre said in a statement.
"Due to the nature of harsh Manitoba winters and vulnerable wildlife patients needing extended care, (it is) resulting in capacity concerns for the organization for the first time since moving into their new campus in 2019."
The centre said its veterinary hospital, which is newly accredited, has been working hard since opening in July. It has a diagnostics room with special equipment, including an X-ray machine, centrifuge and cups for fecal parasite testing. The operation room includes a table that can tilt (this helps with flushing out stomachs), an anesthesia machine and monitoring technology. The roughly 500-square-foot space was retrofitted this year using $60,000 raised from donations.
The non-profit, charitable organization, founded in 1984, has helped rehabilitate more than 50,000 injured, sick or orphaned wild animals since it opened.
The animals they traditionally help have been injured by striking windows, colliding with vehicles or hydro wires, but the centre says they are now seeing ones who need assistance because of drought and wind storms.
The organization says it costs them about $50 per day on average to help an animal.