Wild bird rehab facility needs donations to stay open
The only nonprofit that cares for wild birds in the Denver metro area may have to shut its doors without support from the community.
Wild B.I.R.D. Information and Rehabilitation of Denver is licensed by U.S. Fish and Wildlife and the Colorado Division of Parks and Wildlife and has cared for more than 30,000 birds in the 11 years it has been operating.
The organization usually only operates during the summer and has budgeted that way because founder Deborah Stimple would care for birds in her own home over the winter.
After a complaint from a neighbor that she was breaking city code and a failed appeal to the board of adjustment for zoning appeals, Stimple had to move the birds to the summer operating facility at 1880 South Quebec Way.
"That's always been Wild B.I.R.D.'s dream is to be open 12 months out of the year because so many birds get in trouble in the winter months but funding was just not enough to handle the overhead and stuff for the rehab center," Stimple said.
Right now, Wild B.I.R.D. is using its funds it was going to use to open in May to stay open as long as it can through the winter months. Currently, the facility is housing 260 birds of 112 different species including robins, blue jays, crows, ducks, geese, herons and humming birds - many who are injured and can no longer survive in the wild.
"It's one day at a time for our facility right now. We just have to see how many donations come in and keep the heat up," Stimple said.
Wild B.l.R.D. says it needs a bare minimum of $5,000 to stay open each month to pay for overhead, utilities, food and vet bills for the animals.
If it does not get enough donations, after 11 years of work, Stimple says she will have to shut the doors and try to find homes for the birds or see if other agencies in Denver can take them.
"We might have to put down a lot of the birds. It would be devastating," she said.
If you would like to learn more or donate to Wild B.I.R.D., head to their website at http://www.wildbirdrehab.com/Wild_B.I.R.D./Home.html.