MAGNOLIA, Texas—If you work at Friends of Texas Wildlife in Magnolia, there is one thing you need to know.
"If you’re afraid of a little poop or getting bitten or scratched, wildlife rehabilitation isn’t for you," said one worker.
Jeanette Winkelmann, president of the organization, understands that better than most and she has the scars to prove it.
"It’s how it is in the real world of rehabbing," said Winkelmann.
The problem is the real world is encroaching on the natural world, resulting in an influx of mammals, birds and especially deer hit by cars.
"We usually have a report there’s a fawn by the dead mother trying to nurse," said Winkelmann. "And we get that call, and it’s very hard to say no."
Last year, Friends of Texas Wildlife took in some 3,000 animals. This year that number is 3,700, and it’s just July.
Deer are proving to be especially costly. They’ve taken in 61 fawns to date, at a cost of $1,000 per deer—not including vet bills.
With no government assistance, they couldn’t do it without the support of volunteers like Jo Snyder, who is currently fostering five fawns.
"Some people say there’s too many animals, too many deer. Let nature takes its course," said Snyder. "Walk in my shoes. See an animal injured and tell me you’re not going to do something about it."
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