Home Wildlife Center non-releasable education ambassadors live on camera in August

Wildlife Center non-releasable education ambassadors live on camera in August

Crystal Graham

wildlife center of virginiaThe Wildlife Center of Virginia will host three on-camera events with their non-releasable education animals at the center on Wednesdays in August.

The three events will focus on enrichment which the center defines as stimulus provided to an animal that encourages it to perform the natural behaviors its species would display in the wild.

This can be as simple as hiding an animal’s food so it has to forage, or as complex as changing an animal’s habitat throughout each season.

There are many forms of enrichment, but the overall goal is the same: to help keep animals active and healthy, both physically and mentally.

Three enrichment sessions are planned in August:  

  • Wednesday, Aug. 10 at 10 a.m.: Sheldon and Wilson (two Woodland box turtles) will take a trip to their outdoor turtle garden, where the center have their favorite snacks and new plants scattered around the yard. This will encourage both turtles to be active and forage for their food just as they would in the wild.
  • Wednesday, Aug. 17 at 10 a.m.: Violet (a Virginia opossum) will have to use her keen sense of smell to find hidden treats in an outdoor enclosure, just as an opossum would search for food in the wild.
  • Wednesday, Aug. 24 at 10 a.m.: Buddy (a bald eagle) will need to use his strong beak and sharp talons while searching for some of his favorite foods inside paper-mâché items designed to look like animals that bald eagles might scavenge in the wild.

Each of these virtual programs will be streamed live on the Wildlife Center’s Facebook page.

Crystal Graham

Crystal Graham

Crystal Abbe Graham is the regional editor of Augusta Free Press. A 1999 graduate of Virginia Tech, she has worked for nearly 25 years as a reporter and editor for several Virginia publications, written a book, and garnered more than a dozen Virginia Press Association awards for writing and graphic design. She was the co-host of "Viewpoints," a weekly TV news show, and co-host of Virginia Tonight, a nightly TV news show. Her work on "Virginia Tonight" earned her a national Telly award for excellence in television.