Ramblings around: Peace River Wildlife Center
Nestled in the corner of Ponce De Leon Park is a quiet little wooden building with a modest fence and gate around it. This little piece of property does wondrous things. It protects injured and permanently disabled birds found throughout the county. It is the Peace River Wildlife Center.
The Wildlife Center is not what you expect. The Peace River Wildlife Center is not run by any Local, State, or Federal government.
It is run by volunteers and is funded completely donations.
What they’ve been able to do with these donations is amazing!
There are huge areas for each class of bird that are optimized for their comfort.
Those birds that can fly have room for flight.
Those that love to swim have ponds to swim in.
Those that need “houses” have “houses” to dwell in.
The birds are all survivors of some sort of accident. Some have lost wings, some have lost legs, but through the help of the hard working volunteers. These birds live long, happy lives.
The volunteers have helped me on several occasions as well. Whenever tree trimming time comes at my day job there always seems to be one baby bird that falls out of the nest. It is quickly picked up and hopefully put back in the nest. Other times the nest is destroyed by a storm, an accident, or by predators. That’s when I take the bird to the Wildlife Center. The people take in the orphan, no questions asked, and will even offer a web address to follow the bird’s progress and, hopefully, release back into the wild. They do ask for a donation if possible and gladly take $5.00; but they will also take the bird in without any monetary offering.
Being an program that subsists completely on volunteering and donations, the Peace River Wildlife Center has learned to be very creative in how they collect donations.
The Peace River Wildlife Center asks just $5.00 donation for a tour.
They gladly accept your empty soft drink cans for recycling.
They have a wish list of items for donation.
They have fundraisers through various businesses in the county.
You can “Adopt” a bird for $10 a month.
You can become a member.
There is a gift shop where a small percentage of the item price goes to the center.
All donations are tax deductible.
And they will even happily accept Coke Reward points to “buy” items used at the fundraisers.
If you don’t have money and live close by, you can volunteer.
Linda Harrison, who is in charge of the Peace River Wildlife Center let me know that they are in need of people who can paint and can swing a hammer or saw wood.
She also let me know that the two main things the Center needs are Hurricane shutters and an off-site storage facility. A shed. See, the Peace River Wildlife Center is both blessed and cursed by being part of the Ponce De Leon Park. While they enjoy a greater chance of people discovering them due to their location, they are also land-locked and cannot expand. They have optimized the space allotted to them, but have no place for bulk donations. A shed, a garage, or a storage unit close by would be a boon to them.
If you would like to donate I’ll will have the link for you below. But what I would ask of you is to spread the word. Reblog this post, post it on Facebook, Tweet it, Google plus it, anything and everything you can do to get the word out. Let the world know about this wondrous place and the good that is done there. If you don’t want to use this blog, use their official website. It won’t bother me one bit. I have the greatest people in the world reading my blog and I know that you guys can do amazing things with just a click of a mouse. So go crazy and let your spirit soar! The Peace River Wildlife Center will be glad you did.
If you’d like to see more, you can check out their live web cams. Just type GUEST under User Name and 3400 for the password.
Web address: http://www.peaceriverwildlifecenter.com/index.html
Address: 3400 Ponce de Leon Parkway (old W. Marion Ave.) Punta Gorda, Florida 33950
Phone: (941) 637-3830 fax: (941) 637-3857
FROM I-75: TAKE EXIT 164 Turn left onto US-17 / South Duncan Road toward Downtown Punta Gorda. Continue to follow US-17 South, US-17 South becomes West Marion Avenue. Crossing over U.S 41 North and South, Continue on West Marion Avenue passing Fisherman’s Village.
FROM U.S. 41 US-17 / West Marion Avenue
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