Education Ambassadors

Our education ambassadors have disabilities that have rendered them un-releasable. Interested in meeting the animal team? Visit our Education page for a list of program options.

Lucy, Canada Goose
Disability: Imprinted

Illegally taken from the wild and raised by humans, Lucy came to our center as a gosling. She was introduced to flocks of her own kind, but attempts to rehabilitate her back to a “wild” state proved futile. She had become very fond of people and never learned the skills necessary to survive on her own.
Zhina Edited
Zihna, Red-Tailed Hawk
Disability: Head Trauma and Imprinted

Zihna is currently undergoing training and is unavailable for programs.

Zihna (pronounced Zeye-nah) was brought to the center with severe head trauma. Because he was so young at the time of the injury, he became imprinted during treatment. He has permanent balance issues but with training, provided by center staff, he has greatly improved.
Ernie and Bernadette Education Ambassadors
Ernie and Bernadette
Disabilities: Fractured Wing, Habituated

Ernie was brought to the center by the Chicago Bird Collision Monitors with a fractured wing of unknown origin. Unable to fly, he cannot be released back into the wild due to his injury.

Bernadette was found on a residential driveway. Lethargic and unwilling to fly away, she was brought to the center by the homeowner. Due to her friendly demeanor and lack of fear, she is presumably a former racing pigeon. During her brief recuperation she formed a special bond with our resident rock dove, Ernie.
These special birds demonstrate that all species deserve a second chance.
Lance Edited
Lancelot, Eastern Milk Snake
Disability: Habituated

Lancelot came to us through the generosity of a retiring naturalist from another facility. Raised from an egg, he has spent his entire life educating the public about his species.
Toby, 3-toed Box Turtle
Disability: Habituated

Toby came to the center when he was found alone in an alley. Because he is so friendly to humans, it is suspected that he was dumped there by someone who raised and no longer wanted to care for him. He was never given the opportunity to develop the skills necessary to survive in the wild. With no fear of predators or ability to care for himself, he cannot be released.
Peanut, Fox Squirrel
Disability: Incisors Never Grew In

Peanut, a fox squirrel, never had her incisors grow in and they were infected in her jaw. Her incisors had to be surgically removed. Not having teeth to break open acorns and nuts, Peanut would not survive in the wild.
Zypher, Education Ambassador
Zephyr, Eastern Screech Owl
Disability: Eye Injury

Zephyr is currently undergoing training and is unavailable for programs.

Zephyr, an Eastern Screech Owl, lost an eye due to an injury. Once healed from his injuries, Zephyr was tested for his ability to catch live prey. He did not hunt with success and was placed with FVWC as an ambassador animal.

Dizzy, American Robin
Disability: Head Trauma

Dizzy, an American Robin, arrived at our center after being improperly cared for by a well-intentioned member of the public during her adolescence. Upon being released into the wild, she was attacked by other birds and then brought to our center. Dizzy sustained head injuries that have left her with very poor vision and physical deformities.