Posts Tagged ‘ferrets’

by , Director
I've been at the Museum sooooo long - longer than many of our interns have been alive. I do a little bit of everything as part of my job: care for the animals, work with the keepers and other staff, spend time with guests. Lucky me!
I spend a lot of time behind-the-scenes, or here after hours, but if you really want to see me, you'll have to sign-up for a behind-the-scenes program.

Christmas 2013

December 25th, 2013

thanks for the sweet potatoes Donna

Twas the night before Christmas and left at my house, a bag of sweet potatoes for the Museum Bears.  (If I were Sarah, I am sure I could have come up with some great rhyme… in fact she probably could write my entire Christmas post to the Poem Twas the night before Christmas- check out her previous poems here and here).

The day started with me very very tired, and unable to find my glasses. I’ve got about 10-15 pillows on my bed and even removing all of them still no glasses. I gave up, found my spare glasses, made a cup of coffee, and made my way to the Museum around 5:15

Here’s the rundown for the day so far:

I move all the logbooks in one space and check out my “to do” lists, and in a room that has light not on a timer so I can see easier.

 

 

Katy has set up the supplies I need for treatments, and Jill has left a note for Donald (click on the note to enlarge it if you want to read it).

all the syringes and bowls and medicines lined up so I can work more efficiently. (Thanks Katy)

Jill’s note to Donald. The last part is my favorite as I have lived through this happening and it is not a pretty sight.

the muskrat had gathered all this food in the 5-10 minutes or so it took me to get my camera and come back

Yesterday, we solved the mystery as to why the waterfall at wolves was not running, so I was able to cross that off my list. (The wolves- I assume the male wolf – ate the electrical wires. That will have to be a separate post at a later date). Concerns about the muskrat were top priority so I donned my headlamp to go check him out. I couldn’t really see him, but did see that he had eaten overnight so I sigh of relief for now.

I fumble around- not getting into any sort of groove.  I put all the diets on the kitchen counter to help me make a plan of attack. My plan of attack is quite chaotic. I start something, realize I can’t see too well in the dark, re group, start something else…things go on like this for a while and before I know it I’ve been here 90 minutes.

Katy warned me that the ferrets would be difficult to keep in their exhibit and would rush the door upon closing. I felt confident in my plan however: I knocked on their door to wake them up (wanting them to use the litter pans before cleaning). Came back in five minutes with a CRATE and put all four inside:

Katy said to put them all in the yellow ring (below) upon leaving and that gives you enough time to close the door.  However, what really gives you enough time to close the door is spilling furotone (oil supplement) on each ferret so that everyone is licking everyone else and not even concerned about the door!

 

It’s light enough so I go make sure I can see the remaining animals. Franklin is busy eating his food and everyone else seems fine.

Franklin eating his lettuce

Donald and his granddaughter Caroline arrive a few minutes before 8AM. Caroline looks tired (I feel her pain), but Donald gets her to pose for the camera. I’ve never seen Donald not smile. It’s really amazing if you think about it. We review the plan for the Farmyard, get Caroline some gloves, and head outside.

Donald reading the note from Jill.

 

 

It takes a little effort to get our vehicles started, but we prevail. I was so hot working inside that I forgot it was just over 30 degrees outside and my drive is more than quite chilly.

I drive through the Farmyard to check on the critters, and then move on to the Explore the Wild Critters.

The alpacas seem fine on this chilly morning

male on the bottom and female towards the top of the den.

I take a bit of a skid through the icy patch at the MIST entrance in Catch the Wind. I hit wolves first. Both the wolves are waiting at the den area. No issues at all here. Everything is fine so move quickly to the bear exhibit.

Mimi, as expected, is sleeping in the house. I wake her, she huffs at me, I feel badly, she huffs at me again, I toss out food, she goes and eats. Gus is snoozing in the cave (sorry about the bad photo): he lifts his head and then puts it back down.

Gus in the den

Lemurs is the next stop. Absolutely no problems here- it’s actually a bit confusing. No one yelled at me, no one peed on me. I did not step in anything I didn’t want to. I did not dump my poop bucket. No lemur exited their stall. I think this is a first on Christmas to not have even one small problem occur. (Although as I type I realize I left the dustpan in the disinfectant can… I’ll have to remember to get that tonight.

The last stop is the bear cliff to check things out and give Yona her meds. I thought this would be a bit difficult, but Virginia has made her way down into the yard, so Yona just needs to stretch, stare at me for a minute or two, and then wander over to me at the fence.

I was even prepared: I had no yogurt cup but grabbed an extra bowl from lemurs to give Yona her meds in.

Yona was easy: “blueberry preserves” worked really well.

I head back to the Farmyard, deal with the raptors, and then head to the building. Dishes goes much better than last year (I just did not wear my glasses).

It’s possibly been one of the easiest Christmas’ I’ve worked – and I’ve worked every Christmas since 1993! I know the afternoon is still coming, but so far, so good. Merry Christmas everyone.

(Click here to read about some of my past Christmas’ at the Museum).

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  1. Keeper Comment :

    ‘Twas the morning of Christmas, and left on her porch, a bag of potatoes from Donna next door!

    The bears won’t be hungry this Christmas day; not that they’ll eat them again until May.

    The day started rough with glasses amiss, pillows were tossed, the room searched forthwith!

    Resigning their fate to the bedroom elves, spare glasses were acquired and some coffee was quelled.

    The morning began a mile away in the dark and quiet of the museum’s early day.

    Logbooks were stacked to be ordered and checked as the morning went on, there’s no going back to bed!

    Treatments were finished, notes were read. “Don’t let the pigs find the pumpkins!” Jill’s note to Donald said.

    In Explore the Wild, a present was left. “A gift from the wolves” the unwanted tag read. A gasket was shredded, the pumps’ plug was chewed off. “We’re saving you energy! A gift you didn’t think of!”

    As the morning wound down, all the animals were checked. Nothing went horribly wrong this year, how ’bout that?

    So thankful we are for this day of the year, when our boss comes in so we can stay here.

    “Here” might be close or miles away, but it matters greatly to us to be home Christmas Day.

    This year went well, and with a new one in sight,
    “Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!”

    Posted by Sarah Van de Berg
  2. Sarah for the win!

    Posted by Ranger Ro

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by , Director
I've been at the Museum sooooo long - longer than many of our interns have been alive. I do a little bit of everything as part of my job: care for the animals, work with the keepers and other staff, spend time with guests. Lucky me!
I spend a lot of time behind-the-scenes, or here after hours, but if you really want to see me, you'll have to sign-up for a behind-the-scenes program.

New ferrets are here

January 22nd, 2013

We have three new ferrets that our educators will begin to use for programs in February. They arrived today- rescued from the shelter. Please welcome Abraham, Betsy, and Martha. Each is about 1.5 years old.

Abraham is an albino ferret who weighs just over 2.5 pounds.

 

Betsy is on the left- she’s the brown one. Martha is the cream-colored ferret on the right. She’s our smallest, weighing about 1.75 pounds. (Betsy weighs about 2.25 pounds.

 

from left to right: Abraham, Betsy, and Martha

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  1. Cuuuuuuuuuuuute!

    Posted by Wendy

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by , Keeper
I'm extremely excited to be working at the Museum since October 2010. My favorite part of this job- besides working with the animals- is listening to all of the Keeper stories, I hear a new one each day. In my spare time I enjoy hiking, belly dancing, and vegan cooking.
I work Sunday through Thursday. I can be found mostly behind the scenes or training the Ring Tail Lemurs.

Photos from Inside

October 5th, 2012

Just a few cute photos to share with everyone.

 

Sleepy ferrets, Dixie and Mason

I love how Volunteer Colet set up the playpen for Silkie Chicken to spend the day in

Henry our Woodchuck having his morning supplements on a piece of bread

Jaybird showing off his dinner

One of our Muskrats enjoying a snack

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  1. I miss my babies!

    Posted by Jill
  2. I bet!

    Posted by kimberly

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by , Keeper
I'm extremely excited to be working at the Museum since October 2010. My favorite part of this job- besides working with the animals- is listening to all of the Keeper stories, I hear a new one each day. In my spare time I enjoy hiking, belly dancing, and vegan cooking.
I work Sunday through Thursday. I can be found mostly behind the scenes or training the Ring Tail Lemurs.

Climb on in

December 10th, 2011

Mason and Dixie enjoying some Keeper sleeves

At the end of the day, right before close, we often have a few minutes to ourselves and well… this is what happens :) Actually if I remember correctly I was holding Dixie and Keeper Sarah presented her sleeve- Dixie immediately climbed right in and we of course had to try with Mason and Keeper Jill as well. These are the kind of moments that make any day great!

 

Join the conversation:

  1. Awes that’s when I had a gall bladder!

    Posted by jill
  2. Yea and I bet you look completely different now

    Posted by Kimberly
  3. Its all how you feel on the inside.

    Posted by jill

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by , Keeper
I graduated from NCSU(go pack) and have worked in the animal department for about 8 years. Some of my favorites include ferrets and birds. I am also known for my weird obsession with Boba Fett.
I work Tuesday-Saturday in either the Farmyard or inside the main building behind the scenes.

Ferret Fun

October 13th, 2011

In our Education Holding Room the animals get shredded paper to nest in. Majority of the time our shredded paper comes from our offices but sometimes we will make our own.

This presented a perfect opportunity for our 2 ferrets, Mason and Dixie

Dixie

Mason lounging

Ferrets in general love to dig so they had a little fun having a whole trash can of shredded paper to themselves.

 

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by , Keeper
I'm extremely excited to be working at the Museum since October 2010. My favorite part of this job- besides working with the animals- is listening to all of the Keeper stories, I hear a new one each day. In my spare time I enjoy hiking, belly dancing, and vegan cooking.
I work Sunday through Thursday. I can be found mostly behind the scenes or training the Ring Tail Lemurs.

Shiver Me Timbers!

July 31st, 2011

Ahoy everyone! I saw a group of sprogs swashbucklin’ near a great, grand ship- flying the Jolly Roger. Yo-ho-ho how they crack me up! Aye those landlubbers be causing trouble, one lass and two buccaneers sailing the open sea…  Or just chasing each other around while climbing through this ferret ship hammock- check out the pictures below and this site for more pirate talk.

Ladybelle is the first to check out their new boat- I'm sorry- great, grand ship

Dixie's interested too- time to climb aboard

Mason is such a gentleman- letting the lasses go first

Ah!! Mutant two toned ferret!!!!

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  1. Director Comment :

    Didn’t the pirate ship come with a pirate shirt that you put on a ferret?

    Posted by Sherry Samuels
  2. Keeper Comment :

    It did come with a shirt , however we’ve had a hard time snapping a good picture of it. I may have some time on my hands this week to try again :)

    Posted by Kimberly Lawson

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by , Keeper
I'm extremely excited to be working at the Museum since October 2010. My favorite part of this job- besides working with the animals- is listening to all of the Keeper stories, I hear a new one each day. In my spare time I enjoy hiking, belly dancing, and vegan cooking.
I work Sunday through Thursday. I can be found mostly behind the scenes or training the Ring Tail Lemurs.

Tucked in tight!

June 5th, 2011

The other day I was cleaning EHR (our education animal holding room) and the first animal I came across was Jessica Opposum.  She had a sleepover in the playpen the night before and I just had to show everyone where she chose to sleep… in a ferret hammock, now there is a significant difference in the size of ferrets vs opposums.  Enjoy the photos below.

Here's Jessica all snug in her ferret hammock

J.Pos beginning to emerge

She's got her head out- that's a good start

One leg out... a l m o s t there

Whoo hoo she made it out! And I got a good laugh watching.

 

Here's Jill holding all 3 of our ferrets, all 3 of them could fit easily into the same hammock, at the same time

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by , Keeper
I graduated from NCSU(go pack) and have worked in the animal department for about 8 years. Some of my favorites include ferrets and birds. I am also known for my weird obsession with Boba Fett.
I work Tuesday-Saturday in either the Farmyard or inside the main building behind the scenes.

Meet Mason and Dixie

May 7th, 2011

Not too long ago, we suffered a few losses in our department. Our ferrets Tinkerbell, Al, Casper and Fluff&Stuff succumbed to their illnesses. Ferrets are susceptible to diseases such as Adrenal Failure and Insulinoma. The two ferrets I personally owned died from these diseases as well.

The museum acquired Ladybelle, the ferret, and recently we were able to adopt Mason and Dixie. Mason, is a boy who is sable in color and Dixie, is our albino female ferret. We don’t know their personal habits or quirks yet, because they are still in quarantine, but we do know that Dixie LOVES squeaky toys.

Mason

Dixie

Join the conversation:

  1. Look at those cute faces!!!

    Posted by Kimberly
  2. Good to know they’re not camera shy! I love Mason’s mask.

    Posted by Natalie
  3. Mason has the smartest looking eyes i’ve ever seen!!!!!

    Posted by Katy

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by , Keeper
I have been working at the museum since 2003, and I feel fortunate to have a job where I can start my day with amazing animals surrounding me. I enjoy camping, hiking and rock climbing in my spare time when the weather is nice.
I work Tuesday through Saturday and spend a lot of time behind the scenes, but you might find me at a public program or feeding the farmyard animals in the afternoon.

“How interesting!”…

September 28th, 2010

… as Kristen would say. That was the phrase she used when she found out a little tidbit about our newest animal arrival this past Friday.  Apparently our new ferret was previously named Tinkerbell, but we had to change her name to LadyBelle because we already had a Tinkerbell ferret here before!

Now, we seem to just have an unsaid rule that you can’t give another animal a previous animal’s name…. at least not if the animal is the same species as the previous name holder. For instance, we once had a goat named Henry so we will not give that name to another goat. However, our new woodchuck is named Henry and that is perfectly okay!

I don’t have a picture yet of LadyBelle, but we should have one soon. And if you know anything about ferrets, the picture will be overflowing with cuteness, so check in later!

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by , Keeper
I am most famous here in the animal department for "expanding" the barred owl exhibit, clogging the wolf pool, and splitting my pants. My other less notorious work, since 2003, includes keeping, purchasing our animal supplies, coordinating our volunteers, and managing our animal enrichment program.
Find me training the lemurs or in other various animal enclosures Monday through Friday, or at the grocery store on Wednesdays, when I shop for produce!

Ferret exercise

October 29th, 2008


The other day, Keeper Katy was attempting to sweep our hallway while the ferrets (Casper, Al, Tinkerbell and Fluff) were out running around and getting some exercise– very entertaining!

YouTube Preview Image

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