cooling stations for our wild friends

hello everyone (or perhaps more accurately, you few people who by now have most likely forgotten this blog even exists)! after putting in an honest effort to post regularly, then making an honest assessment of my honest effort (k, done now, promise) – finding it pathetic but mostly expected – i realized you probably don’t give a shit. and that made me feel better.

so, if you would like to get more regular and frequent updates on my shop and funny things i find online, check out my facebook page. otherwise, i hope you continue to enjoy my sporadic postings on this blog.

today i’m writing about something that’s very important to me, and i hope to you, too. with the crazy hot weather we’re having in the northern hemisphere right now, wild animals like squirrels, birds, and toads are in serious danger of dying of heat stroke and dehydration. there are some simple things you can do to help, and in return you’ll get the good feelings associated with aiding cute little animals in need and you may even enjoy the added benefit of getting to see more of these creatures around your yard.

THING ONE: TINY POOLS

it’s simple: grab an old shallow container, lid, saucer; whatever you have laying around. if you don’t have anything like that in your house, that’s weird, but don’t despair: it’s okay to be weird. you can instead buy shallow baking tins at your local grocery store. i set up multiple little pools around my yard and didn’t have enough containers so i also bought some baking tins and ended up using the clear plastic lids that came with them ’cause they were a bit shallower.

you may have noticed that’ i’ve used the word ‘shallow’ a lot. that’s ’cause it’s important, and i really want to make sure it gets through to you. it would be horrible if in your effort to help an animal you inadvertently drowned it. so either keep the water very shallow (most of my pools were 1/2″ to 1 1/2″ deep, and i propped them on one side so there was a shallow end) or add a little ladder that smaller animals can use to get out; or feel free to do both. i put a stick in a container that had taller sides because i was worried chipmunks would not be able to get out easily, but all of the other containers i used were at ground level and had a low water level. here are some pictures that should help you understand what i’m talking about:

this is a little tray to put plant pots on to catch extra water. it makes a wonderful shallow pool for small animals to cool off in or drink from.

this is a little tray to put plant pots on to catch extra water. it makes a wonderful shallow pool for small animals to cool off in or drink from.

this is a little in-ground pond i made by digging out a bit of grass and putting a baking pan lid in.

this is a little in-ground pool i made by digging out a bit of grass and putting a baking pan lid in. ground level pools are easier to drink out of.

this is a deeper pool with taller sides so i put two sticks in it so if any little guys get in there they have an easy way to get back out.

this is a deeper pool with taller sides so i put two sticks in it so if any little guys get in there they have an easy way to get back out.

THING TWO: MISTER

sitting under some cool mist for a bit is a good way for animals to beat the heat. when i was out getting supplies for the little pools, i also grabbed a standard hose extender with various settings, including ‘mist’. i intended to hang the hose on a low branch under a lovely large tree in my yard, but unfortunately there aren’t any branches low enough for me to easily reach, so that plan was nixed. however, i do also have a hideous pole with a light on it that also has an extension to hang shit off of, and that turned out to be perfect, so i set up my mister there. check it out:

supplies - cost me about twelve bucks total.

supplies – cost me about twelve bucks total.

the mister in action

the mister in action

a close-up, rather ugly shot showing how the hose is held up.

a close-up, rather ugly shot showing how the hose is held up.

use the mist setting. MIST.

use the mist setting. MIST.

OTHER THINGS

there are other easy things you can do to help – check out this short, easy-to-follow list made by the humane society.

also, when setting up any type of cooling station, be sure to pick a shady spot; preferably one that is shady all day, but at least a spot that is shady during peak heat hours. this way animals won’t be forced to trek out in the hot sun to find your cooling station. under a tree is a great spot.

lastly, it’s important to change the water in the little pools daily. this keeps the water fresh and cool and also prevents the pools from being used as mosquito hatcheries.

keep that water fresh!

keep that water fresh!

THANK YOU

thank you in advance for helping our furry, feathered, scaly, and slimy friends. and please remember that perhaps the best thing you can do to help animals live in a suitable environment (like the kind they’ve evolved over great periods of time to live in) is to lead an eco-friendly lifestyle.

if you have any questions about cooling stations don’t hesitate to email me at: sarah {at!} thelittleschremlin {dot!} com.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s