Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Settling In

My name is Jessica, and I am the current red wolf caretaker intern for the Red Wolf Recovery Program. My time at Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge has been everything I have dreamed of and so much more.

I started on a Monday by moving into the caretaker's cabin at Sandy Ridge, the Red Wolf Recovery Program's captive-holding facility. It was better than anything that I had thought would be provided in the woods. I have lights and heat and I even on occasion have running water and electricity. After getting settled into my cabin I was given a tour of the wolf enclosures where I would be spending most of my days. And on my first night in the cabin, the wolves howled for me. It was a great first day!

Over the rest of that week I began feeding the wolves on my own. I was also having animals brought in that would be staying for a couple of days that I had to get settled in by myself. I wasn’t sure if life could get better at that point.

Later, once I was comfortable with my regular duties and daily tasks, I went with one of the Red Wolf Recovery Program biologist to check traps. Though we didn’t catch anything that day I learned a lot. I saw how to set traps and what to look for when choosing a location for traps. I learned what made one place better than another. -- Jessica

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