Below is a recent email that Mary sent out to the Animal Care Team volunteers. We’d love to have them here with us but are glad they are staying safe at home.
This is typically the time I am arranging the volunteer calendar for April. All I can think about as I look at a blank calendar is how much we very much miss our dedicated Animal Care Volunteers! We are getting by during this shut down. The animals and people are getting used to the “new norm for now”. But it is very different without you all. Every one of you lifts up this team and we miss you all dearly.
What’s going on at the Museum?
The Animal Care Team is currently split into 2 groups that work opposite schedules. Our keeper office is now stationed in Carolina Wildlife (it’s quite the strange sight). This is to ensure that we keep practicing social distancing and increase the chances of us staying healthy. We do have a few staff helpers to give us a boost several days a week. Jill, even though she moved over to the Exhibits Department a few months ago, has returned to help out the Animal Care Team. It is amazing to see the workers crossing over into different departments to help each other during this difficult time.
- We have a new bearded dragon “DuckieDragon”. She is quite the character.
- Gypsy goat went in for a dental and did very well. She is eating hay like a champ.
- Lightning misses everyone – we have table and chairs out there so that we can eat lunch with him. The staff is making sure that he not only gets his daily walk but also a spirited game of fetch!
- There is grass in the wolf yard again!
- Tortoises moved from indoor viewing to Lemur Yard for the season.
- All of the Farmyard animals had their physicals- everyone was awesome and healthy.
I alone cannot express to you how much you are missed. The following are messages from some of the Animal Care Team:
I am very much missing my Sunday and Tuesday Super Crew! I cannot wait to have you all back! I very much appreciate everything you do, from deep cleaning holding rooms, to water testing, to sweeping and moping all the rooms and halls. You are essential to our team and I cannot wait until we are open again! -Mary
I miss all of you wonderful volunteers and your smiling faces! The animal hall feels so empty and quiet without you. Virginia, Saturdays are much less enjoyable without you and Virginia Bear agrees! I’m looking forward to seeing all of you back at the museum after this mess is over! -Kate
Farmyard has been quieter and lonely without all our volunteers- I miss you guys and the animals do too, especially Lightning! We can’t wait until you’re all back. You guys make such a difference with all your hard work and your upbeat attitudes. I hope you’re all doing well and staying safe but I’m greatly looking forward to when you’re able to come back and help us provide for all the animals. Miss you all and thank you for all you do!
P.S. Special shout-out from me to Cassie and Cathy (my all-star-superclean-team). They are AMAZING every week and so much fun to work with and I can’t wait until you’re back 🙂 –Shayna
I am so thankful to work alongside such an amazing group of volunteers. Your hard work is very much appreciated by me, the team, and of course the animals! You have all been greatly missed during this time, and I look forward to seeing all of you again. Thank you for all that you do! -Paige
We all miss you guys so much! We don’t take you for granted during normal times, but we certainly are feeling it now without you. Hope you’re all staying safe, practicing social distancing and taking care of yourself and loved ones the best you can. We’ll see you after this mess is over 🙂 -Rob
I wanted to take a minute and tell you how much you all mean to me and the Animal Care Team. We miss you. We miss the experiences that we share each week. We miss the smiles, the laughs, the stories, the shared sweat equity, and the adventure of caring for our animal family. We miss you! As we all work to get through this time, I hope you all take comfort and strength from the knowledge that you are all cherished and appreciated. When we get through this time, I look forward to seeing you all back to hear your stories and to see all of your smiles. Stay strong and safe!-Aaron
Dan- I hope all is well with your family. Virginia Bear is on strike deciding not to come to the house until you come back (I guess that is her reasoning). And today, we did lemur super clean without you. Very sad day. We all miss you and all our volunteers. Please stay safe. We all hope that this is over soon and we (people and animals) can enjoy your company and help again soon. -Janine
We eagerly await for when we can see you’re smiling faces again.
Stay healthy y’all!
Mary Peebles | Lead Animal Care Specialist