Results 1 to 6 of 6

Thread: How will I know when she is ready to enter the world - soft release

Hybrid View

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2020
    Location
    Oklahoma
    Posts
    4
    Thanked: 6

    Default How will I know when she is ready to enter the world - soft release

    Twiggy Blossom was too young to release in the fall so I kept her during the winter. She was about 3 weeks (no fur yet) when I took her in so all she really knows is that I am her person.

    We moved her outside into a 4x6x8 cage which she has been in the past few weeks. At first she was quite depressed, not eating or interacting with me. She would turn her back on me when I came outside to talk to her. She still seems to be afraid of any sound that she hears. We have chickens and they are always making noise. She still runs to her bed and hides with most sounds.

    We have developed a pretty strong bond and it hurts my heart to send her "to the lion's den" so to speak. I know she will have a blast in the trees but we have hawks and owls in our area. Most squirrels only make it about 1-2 years around here. We plan to put squirrel boxes in several trees for safety (if recommended) and leave her outdoor cage up as long as she wants to use it.

    When will I know she is ready to be introduced into the yard?

  2. Serious fuzzy thank you's to Piz from:

    sundoesshine (06-23-2021)

  3. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    City Island, Bronx, NY
    Posts
    50,358
    Thanked: 15889

    Default Re: How will I know when she is ready to enter the world - soft release

    hi, Piz. Some are slow to launch. Best thing is to give her time and let her call the shots. Does she have enough enrichment in the release cage for now? Strong tree limbs to practice running up and down, swingy things like bungee toys to reach from....etc. Do you have a little portal (3-4" inches square) in the cage so that she can come and go without larger predators following her?

    How does she react with the wilds who come around? That will give you an idea of how she'll do out there. So many questions, sorry! But this is definitely a process we shouldn't control or force. She'll go when she's ready..
    Island Rehabber
    NY State Licensed
    Wildlife Rehabilitator


    "Ancora Imparo" (I am still learning)
    Michelangelo


    *
    If you can't afford the vet,
    You can't afford a pet.
    NEGLECT IS ABUSE.

    "Better one day in the trees, than a lifetime in a cage."

    '...and the greatest of these, is Love. '

  4. 4 TSBers pass along the fuzzy thanks to island rehabber:

    Chirps (06-24-2021), Nancy in New York (06-24-2021), Scooterzmom (06-24-2021), sundoesshine (06-23-2021)

  5. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2020
    Location
    Oklahoma
    Posts
    4
    Thanked: 6

    Default Re: How will I know when she is ready to enter the world - soft release

    Quote Originally Posted by island rehabber View Post
    hi, Piz. Some are slow to launch. Best thing is to give her time and let her call the shots. Does she have enough enrichment in the release cage for now? Strong tree limbs to practice running up and down, swingy things like bungee toys to reach from....etc. Do you have a little portal (3-4" inches square) in the cage so that she can come and go without larger predators following her?

    How does she react with the wilds who come around? That will give you an idea of how she'll do out there. So many questions, sorry! But this is definitely a process we shouldn't control or force. She'll go when she's ready..
    Hello Island Rehabber,

    Yes, she has 2 floor to ceiling oak limbs with several branches to climb and jump through. I have placed several hanging hideouts and her bungee dragon that she loves to wrestle with in her outdoor habitat. We also built a smaller door (probably closer to 5 inches) for her to go through. Up until last week I was bringing her back into the house for about an hour of play time. It was hard for me to go cold turkey since she was in a cage by herself. I have only seen one squirrel come up to her cage and she lunged at it.

    We have placed several feeding stations around the back to encourage wild squirrels to come around so that she can watch them. Of course, most of them like the front yard because that is where the bird feeders are. lol

    BTW it is the quote at the bottom of your page that made me realize she needs to be released. I had been struggling with whether or not I should make her a pet (I love her so much) and your quote spoke to me. It made me cry because deep down I knew she needed her freedom.

  6. 4 TSBers pass along the fuzzy thanks to Piz:

    Chirps (06-24-2021), island rehabber (06-24-2021), KCullen (08-09-2021), Scooterzmom (06-24-2021)

  7. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2021
    Location
    out west
    Posts
    155
    Thanked: 148

    Default Re: How will I know when she is ready to enter the world - soft release

    Quote Originally Posted by Piz View Post

    BTW it is the quote at the bottom of your page that made me realize she needs to be released. I had been struggling with whether or not I should make her a pet (I love her so much) and your quote spoke to me. It made me cry because deep down I knew she needed her freedom.
    Also to consider is that, as they mature, they change. It's hard to imagine our fun and affectionate squirilies as wild, but once the time comes, it can be fierce. My guess from reading the board posts is that about 25% become wild/aggressive as pets. That is a big gamble because she really only has this short window of time to learn all the things she needs. If you keep her and she ends up being one of the 25%, then you're both kinda up the creek. Also, there are many instances of squirrels staying around or visiting once released, so then you have the best of both worlds.

  8. 3 TSBers pass along the fuzzy thanks to sundoesshine:

    Chirps (06-24-2021), KCullen (08-09-2021), Piz (06-24-2021)

  9. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    City Island, Bronx, NY
    Posts
    50,358
    Thanked: 15889

    Default Re: How will I know when she is ready to enter the world - soft release

    Quote Originally Posted by Piz View Post
    BTW it is the quote at the bottom of your page that made me realize she needs to be released. I had been struggling with whether or not I should make her a pet (I love her so much) and your quote spoke to me. It made me cry because deep down I knew she needed her freedom.
    it will be ok, I promise.
    Island Rehabber
    NY State Licensed
    Wildlife Rehabilitator


    "Ancora Imparo" (I am still learning)
    Michelangelo


    *
    If you can't afford the vet,
    You can't afford a pet.
    NEGLECT IS ABUSE.

    "Better one day in the trees, than a lifetime in a cage."

    '...and the greatest of these, is Love. '

  10. 2 TSBers pass along the fuzzy thanks to island rehabber:

    Chirps (06-24-2021), KCullen (08-09-2021)

  11. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2020
    Location
    Oklahoma
    Posts
    4
    Thanked: 6

    Default Re: How will I know when she is ready to enter the world - soft release

    Just an update on my Bitty.

    So far she is having a blast! Bitty has been a ray of sunshine for the last year--a blessing during the pandemic. I was torn between keeping her (selfish side of me wanted to keep her and love her forever) or letting her have her freedom. She has been free for the last few weeks and is loving it. When I find her in the trees (we have hundreds of them) she does her happy dance on the branch and sometimes she will even come down to visit me. Makes my heart so happy.

    She is testing her skills at building nests. So far, I know of about 7 around our property. Only a couple were too close to the open sky in my opinion. The rest were tucked in between several branches. I hope she stays in our area and some day will have some little ones to introduce to me.

    https://youtu.be/XPoOS5VJ-d8

    https://youtu.be/X_FGzX0zk2E

    Just wanted to share some of my happiness with everyone.

  12. Serious fuzzy thank you's to Piz from:

    KCullen (08-09-2021)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •