wild teachers

Along with the already-fascinating facts and unique aspects of each species, each of the sanctuary animals has an individual story of hardship and recovery. Is there something you would like to know about one of our wild teachers? Contact us today!


six-banded armadillo

Euphractus sexcinctus

Bug seems to have only two speeds—on or off. When he is “on” he runs around, digs holes, and rearranges his enclosure. when he is “off”, he takes naps in the sun.

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Armadillos are crepuscular creatures, preferring to move around in the dim light of evening. Armadillo eyesight is poor, and they rely on smell and touch to navigate, so Bug prefers to rearrange the items in his enclosure himself. He gets fresh hay to sleep on in his den box once a week. He spends the night pushing it out and replacing the hay with dirt.


great horned owl

Bubo virginianus

Luna likes to hide her food, and puts her mice in different places each day. She can often be heard communicating with the wild horned-owls that visit the sanctuary at night.

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Having been hit by a car in Arizona, Luna is one-eyed and unable to hunt. Although Wildlife Associates was told Luna was female, we have our doubts. Luna is a small owl—only 12" tall—and very mellow, while females are typically 14"–20" tall and much more aggressive.


white-tailed kite

Elanus leucurus

Franklin is a very messy eater. He likes to fly like a kite, enjoys taking showers, and will have a “conversation” with you if you stop to chat.

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Franklin is one of only a handful of Kites used in educational programs—they are difficult to work with because they never sit still. In the wild, Franklin would be catching thermal air currents and hovering like a kite while watching for prey. Franklin came to us from a rehab center, one of 5 chicks made homeless by a felled tree.


red-tailed hawk

Buteo jamaicensis

No one knows for sure how birds perceive color, but one thing is sure, Taborri will play with only lime-green toys.

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Due to a damaged wing, Taborri is no longer able to fly, but she does like to go on long walks with her handlers.

The Red Tail is the most widely distributed hawk in the Americas, living in nearly all habitats, from deserts to cities. Very capable hunters, they are the birds most frequently used by falconers, and their distinctive fierce cry is frequently used as a generic raptor sound-effect in television shows and other media.


north american porcupine

Erethizon dorsatum

When Penelope has a goal in mind, she is nearly unstoppable. She loves to climb, chew and spin around to show her quills off to the world, vocalizing the whole time—she even chatters while drinking from her bottle.

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Baby porcupines, called porcupets, are born with their quills, their eyes open and able to walk. North American porcupines are excellent climbers. They have well-developed sharp claws and large, unfurred feet, which have wrinkly pads to increase their dexterity and ability to grip. Although their sharp quills seem to be a perfect defense, some predators are able to evade the quills by flipping the porcupine on its back so that its soft, unquilled belly is exposed.


red-tailed boa

Boa constrictor

Boa constrictors are very capable swimmers.

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Boa constrictors are one of the most popular animals in the exotic pet trade. Constrictors live 20–30 years in captivity, making them a real long-term commitment, and thousands are released into non-native habitats each year when their owners grow tired of them. Lola’s former owner was in 5th grade when he got her, but he had enough responsibility to find her a good home when he joined the Coast Guard many years later.


peregrine falcon

Falco peregrinus

Peregrine falcons are the fastest diving birds in the world, reaching speeds of 200 mph.

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Found all around the world, these incredible hunters almost disappeared in North America due to pesticides such as DDT. Having rebounded after efforts to save the species, the peregrine falcon is a true success story.

Ryker was hit a moving vehicle in 2015. He was brought to the Lindsay Wildlife hospital, and, while X-rays indicate that surgery was successful, he still has a slight wing droop that limits his ability to fly long distances, dive out of the sky and hunt.


barn owl

Tyto alba

If a mouse were running around on the ground in complete darkness, the keen hearing of the barn owl would be able to detect its beating heart.

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Noted for having the best hearing of any animal studied, their disk-shaped faces help funnel sound into their asymmetrically placed ears.

After he sustained a permanent wing injury in 2013, Remington was taken to the Fresno Wildlife Rehab where he started his career as a wild ambassador. He came to Wildlife Associates in the spring of 2016, where is now affectionately known as Sir Remington.