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November, 2018 Newsletter


Big Plans Ahead for Wild and Free!!!!

Wild and Free is planning some EXCITING additions to our facility to enable us to help more Raptors and Larger Mammals!

This includes:
New Outdoor Enclosures (for Fox, Raccoons, and Coyotes)

Property Fencing (to keep our animals and volunteers safe and secure)


(for raptors)!!!!





As you can imagine, it will take considerable funds to complete these improvements.....

The total needed is:

$150,000 (gulp...) .

But the great news is that we are already over 40% of the way to raising this total!!!!


 Over the summer we were honored to be chosen as one of the two charities in the Chuck and Don's Raising Awareness Campaign!!!   This amazing opportunity was made possible by our former board member, and supporter of Wild and Free, John Yeamen, who submitted the application to Chuck and Don's.  The Board of Directors, Our Wildlife Veterinarians, and many of our Volunteers worked hard this past spring and summer to prepare for the 6 week campaign, which also meant MANY visits to most of the 30 Chuck and Don's MN locations to spread the word about Wild and Free!  Everyone's efforts paid off and Wild and Free was presented with a check for $58,354.43!!!!

This amazing contribution along with $4,000 that we had already began saving for this project has brought us to $62,354.43 towards our goal!!!!







This is such an exciting start, so lets keep going!!!
You can help by supporting us on Give to the Max Day , November 15, 2018.





Wild and Free Update from Mary Roach

 It has been unbelievably quiet over at Wild and Free these past few weeks.  By the end of September, we had received over 620 animals and have successfully released 245 of them back into the wild.  That’s a rehabilitation rate of 39.5%.  Wow!  For those of you who may not understand the significance of that number, 33% is the average for successful wildlife rehabbers to release animals back into the wild.  So we are doing really well.  And I have to say, this is all attributed to our outstanding volunteers that continue to care for our animals and keep our facility sparkling clean every day of the year.


Speaking of clean, we had our Fall clean up day on October 15th.  Thanks to Kathy Peterson, Becky Miller, Mitch Roach, Jill Mertes, me, Linda Antil and not pictured Debbie Monchamp for all the work they did shoveling wood chips into our coyote and bear pens, breaking down, stacking and moving numerous animal crates and making sure that we are ready for Winter.  Everyone worked really hard and we were done in less than 2 hours.  Amazing!!!


Currently, we have two red-tailed hawks, one barred owl and one trumpeter swan.







We also continue to feed - or should I say - fatten up our bears.  Below is a picture of three of them when they arrived in March weighing in a 4.5 lbs.  They were so small and barely had their eyes open.  But they quickly took to feeding on their own and were able to move over to the Wild and Free facility.





Thank you again for all the folks that generously donated acorns and apples this Fall.  The bears have really enjoyed them.  In the next few weeks, we will stop feeding them so that they can begin the process of hibernation.  These bears will be with us through Winter until they will be ready for release in early Spring.








As you can see - they are no longer little bears!!!


I want to share with you that this Summer we saw an increase in TAME animals that were surrendered to us.  We had 2 Canadian geese, a whitetail fawn, a raccoon and even a bald eagle.  Not only is it illegal to “own” a wild animal without a permit, it is very detrimental to their survival.  We work very hard at Wild and Free to ensure that our wildlife does not imprint on us.  When we receive a TAME animal, we hope that we have a wild animal of the same species that we can rehab together to see if their natural instinct will return.  If not, these animals are extremely difficult to place.  So please don’t feed the wild animals.  If you find an injured or orphaned animal, please call us right away.

I want to thank Ripple River Gallery for hosting a benefit for us at their open house this year.  We were able to release a great horned owl and red-tailed hawk at the event which is always a sight to see.  Thank you, Bob and Amy for your ongoing support.

Our last fundraiser of the season was at Ruttger’s Octoberfest on Bay Lake.  It was a cold and blustery day that included snow!  Our wonderful volunteers (Kathy Peterson, Debbie Monchamp, Ashley Berg, and Nancy Osvold) endured the weather and did a great job of sharing our story to anyone who visited our booth.


As hunting season gets into full swing, I’d like to encourage those folks to consider using lead-free ammunition.  Lead bullets and shot can unintentionally kill our bald eagles, swans and other wildlife when these animals eat entrails and carcasses of hunter-harvested game taken with lead bullets and shot or feed in cornfields, rivers and lakes.  Here’s to a fun and safe season!


In case you aren’t aware, tune into KKIN on the first Thursday of every month at 8:00am.  We are on the community connection hour talking about all the wonderful happenings at Wild and Free.


Until next time, enjoy every day in the company of nature.


An Eagle turning into a Robin?  A Badger becoming a Bunny?

What about a Great Blue Heron that was only 6 inches tall?

Want to find out about these and other animals
that allegedly changed species?

These are just a couple of the stories that we tell during our presentations to groups such as service organizations like Jaycees, Kiwanis, Sertoma, Lions, etc., Senior Citizen Centers, Church Groups, Schools, Lake Associations, Boy/Girl Scout groups, 4H groups or anyone else that would like to have Wild & Free give a presentation at one of their meetings or luncheons.
We’re looking to schedule more presentations for 2018.  Whether your group consists of 5 year olds, 95 year olds, or any age in between, you will enjoy this presentation consisting of a Power Point Slide Presentation along with rehabilitation details, pictures of some of the animals we have taken care of, stories about some of the animals, a question and answer period, plus informational handouts.
The presentations can be tailored to anywhere from 45 to 90 minutes or more as allowed by any time constraints.
If your group is interested, please contact us as soon as possible with your date and time.  Call Bob or Char Wrobel at 218-764-2625 or by email at:
bwrobel@brainerd.net. or contact the Garrison Animal Hospital at 320-692-4180.


Wild & Free Wish List

Mac Airbook
Pruning Shears

Postage Stamps
Leather work gloves

If you would like to donate any other item that you think we might be able to use, call the Garrison Animal Hospital at 320-692-4180.

You can also shop online using our Amazon Wish List:


If you are a Thrivent Member - you can help designate funds for Wild and Free through their THRIVENT CHOICE Program:




$20 Individual  $30 Family  $50 Business

Make checks payable to:
Wild and Free Wildlife Program
P.O. Box 241
Garrison, Mn  56450

Please include your name and address, phone and your email address.

Click here for our membership form!

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Garrison, MN 56450

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