Roofers work to save baby raccoons

Joanna Fitzgerald, director of the von Arx Wildlife Hospital

84 animals admitted

Three raccoons and two eastern screech owlets were among the 84 animals admitted to the von Arx Wildlife Hospital at the Conservancy of Southwest Florida this past week. Other admissions include a three osprey, a red-tailed hawk, a purple gallinule and yellow-bellied slider.

Raccoon remedy

The three baby raccoons were displaced from their nest when a roofing company was called to do repair work. Staff at the roofing company immediately contacted the wildlife hospital for guidance.

Raccoons typically have two nest spots available so if one nest is disturbed the mother raccoon will often retrieve her babies and relocate them to her alternate nest.

We explained this to the roofing company and the homeowners. They were willing to give the mother a chance to return and retrieve her babies.

They put the babies in a box near where they thought the mother raccoon had been gaining access to the roof.

The box was strapped to the tree to keep the babies safe from ants and predatory animals. Since raccoons are nocturnal the babies were left out overnight with the hopes that the mother would return.

Unfortunately, the disturbance proved to be too much, by the next day the mother had not returned so the babies were brought to the hospital for continued care until they are old enough to fend for themselves.

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A litter of raccoons is weighed prior to being fed. Daily weights are monitored to ensure each baby is growing healthy. The raccoons were abandoned after their nest was disturbed by roofing repairs.

Find an injured animal? Call us!

If you encounter an injured, sick or orphaned animal call the wildlife hospital for assistance. We will guide you through the process by recommending the proper protective equipment to utilize to keep you safe.

If you think you are dealing with a “nuisance” wildlife situation we will assess the situation to find the cause of the wildlife issue and provide solutions that will hopefully resolve the situation without causing injury or disruption to the animals involved.

Often times, “nuisance” wildlife situations are caused by human behaviors that inadvertently encourage wildlife to frequent our gardens, porches and backyards.

Often times simple changes in human behavior can lead to people successfully co-existing with wildlife.

Recent releases — 50 animals go home

  • 8 eastern cottontails
  • 1 gopher tortoise
  • 5 opossums
  • 1 Florida box turtle
  • 1 anhinga
  • 1 American crow
  • 1 common nighthawk
  • 1 eastern screech owl
  • 3 mourning doves
  • 5 northern mockingbirds
  • 1 red-bellied woodpecker
  • 7 blue jays
  • 1 burrowing owl
  • 2 common grackles
  • 2 common barn owls
  • 3 mottled ducks
  • 1 downy woodpecker
  • 6 brown pelicans

Get involved

Please visit our website at and learn about the many opportunities there are to get involved.

Volunteers are vital in our efforts to assist native wildlife.

If you are unable to give of your time as a volunteer, become a memberordonate.

However you choose to become involved, your support will help the Conservancy continue to protect Southwest Florida’s water, land, wildlife and future.

More blogs from the wildlife hospital:

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Protecting Southwest Florida's unique natural environment and quality of and forever.

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