All posts by Megan

About Megan

I live, work and play in Duluth, MN where depending on how close you are to Lake Superior it could be snowing or raining, foggy or crystal clear, 60 degrees or 80. http://about.me/megan.stanton

Support Animal Welfare Legislation and Watchdog Groups

Please protect animal welfare

I have started a petition at petitions.whitehouse.gov asking the President and Congress to make animal welfare a priority. When I heard that the USDA removed animal cruelty reports from their website, I felt sick to my stomach.  Accountability by the public is a powerful motivator for change and removing that incentive will allow breeders, researchers, Big Agribusiness and other companies that use animals to mistreat and abuse animals without protest.

Sign the petition

Animals add immeasurably to our quality of life whether they be for food, work or companionship. They do feel pain, they do experience emotions (at the very least we can agree that they feel fear), they are capable of suffering physically and mentally. They are incapable of speaking for themselves, demanding change, creating their own destiny, choosing one path or another. We are their guardians and keepers and there is no reason in this universe why it is acceptable to treat the lives we depend on as cruelly as we are capable. Please sign the petition and ask this administration to bring accountability back through the USDA Animal Care Search Tool, and to pass and enforce bills that protect animals from harm and abuse.

According to the email I got from whitehouse.gov, I have “30 days to get 99,999 signatures in order for your petition to be reviewed by the White House. Until your petition has 150 signatures, it will only be available from the following URL and will not be publicly viewable on the Open Petitions section of We the People”

The URL is https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/we-people-ask-federal-government-make-animal-welfare-priority

Please share this with friends and family. This is not about criticizing any administration, this is not about political leanings, this is all about compassion. How can we be a proud nation when we allow abuse to be covered up and hidden away?

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The road to hell is paved with good intentions. The road to animal cruelty is much the same.

It’s really difficult some days to hold one’s tongue. A woman brought a pigeon in to the wildlife rehab place I work for with a severely broken leg. Her dog had gotten hold of it a week and a half prior. She knew about us, but thought she could raise it on her own, try to set the leg and splint it herself. Continue reading The road to hell is paved with good intentions. The road to animal cruelty is much the same.

A bit of a rant

You know what, people, if you call someone at a business and they don’t call you back, do not call the receptionist and start yelling at him/her, as if they are somehow causing your problem.

“I’ve called several times and Joe hasn’t called me back.” then silence. “I really need to talk him, it’s important.” more silence, as if they are waiting for me to do something about it, like I’m suddenly going to Continue reading A bit of a rant

A Hypothermic Red Squirrel

Wednesdays are my office days at Wildwoods so I have less contact with animals than on other shifts, but there is no avoiding it. Once you set foot on WW property, if you are staff you will end up caring for animals. Last night a red squirrel came in while the other staff were busy so I admitted him. He had been caught by a cat, had spinal trauma and a laceration on his neck. Continue reading A Hypothermic Red Squirrel

The taste of summer

Grilling is one of those things completely synonymous with summer. Say, “it’s summer,”or, “it’s grilling season,” and everyone knows what you mean. Warmth, sunshine, fresh air, fresh food, friend and good times. We had no shortage of that as we started our Independence Day weekend.

I have stopped eating most meat for a variety of reasons but I still eat fish and other seafood. So instead of the usual burgers or brats or, as Husband made for himself and our guests, bbq ribs, I get a delicious tuna steak. I always buy from the butcher whenever I get a chunk o’ fish like this, even though it was $14.75/lb. It just tastes better and I think fresh(er) fish holds  up better on the grill too.

I used a recipe from America’s Test Kitchen for the tuna and it is so good. Simply put, make your favorite vinaigrette using honey instead of sugar, pour it on both sides of the tuna steak, and grill. The vinegar will help the flavor of the sauce permeate the fish, and the honey will help the outside brown nicely.

  • 3 Tbsp each lemon juice and red wine vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 3/4 C olive oil
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 2Tbsp fresh thyme or rosemary

Put it all in a sealable jar and shake it like your life depends on a well mixed vinaigrette.

For our side dish I made Chickpea Taboulleh from ThugKitchen.com. Warning: expect a lot of swearing, but really delicious food.

I love summer and a good meal like this is just one of the many reasons.

Wildlife Rehab is Not a Fairy Tale

Most people, I have found, have no idea what it’s really like to be a wildlife rehabber. They can’t even imagine or put themselves in our shoes. I think a lot of people feel like we just play with cute animals all day. Disney, among others, has done a major disservice to wildlife by portraying animals as creatures that should be cuddled with. It’s not at all like that. It’s hard. So incredibly hard. I want to share with you what my last animal care shift was like so that maybe you will understand that when you call a wildlife rehabber and they ask a ton of questions or sound rude, it’s not because we’re mean or we think you’re lying, we’re not being short with you because of you. We’re exhasted in every possible sense of the word. Mentally, spiritually, emotionally, physically exhausted. We are short-staffed, we are under-funded, we are constantly dealing with volunteers and interns who don’t show up, or people who lie to our faces about the wildlife they bring to us, and so many of our days go like this: Continue reading Wildlife Rehab is Not a Fairy Tale

Cove Point Loop, Superior Hiking Trail

The Inconvenience of Holding a Leash

Things tend to happen in waves at Wildwoods, which makes sense as we are working with nature. There are seasons. First squirrel and bunny babies, then fawns and fledglings in the spring. As we move into summer and “baby” season comes to a close, we enter injured adult season. Even that has its own sub-seasons. For example, over the last couple weeks we’ve gotten in at least five or six painted turtles that have been hit by cars as they try to cross the road. But there is another wave of injuries happening that is completely preventable, though not many people around here seem to think the inconvenience is worth it. Every time we talk about it people get upset, some even get very irrational and seem to believe that the responsibility of keeping wildlife safe from this particular threat is Wildwoods’ alone, and not that of the caller. Continue reading The Inconvenience of Holding a Leash

Avocado ranch dressing

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I made this tasty treat today over my lunch break. All in a food processor: 1 avocado, 1/4 C mayo, 1/2 C buttermilk, about 1 tsp each lime juice, garlic powder, salt, pepper, dried parsley and dill, and 1 tbsp fresh cilantro. Of course it’s all to taste and can be edited however you want (I’ll be trying Greek yogurt instead of mayo next time). It is quite versatile too. I put it on my salad and it was delicious. I mixed it with salsa and cheese as a chip dip and it was fantastic. This will quickly become a staple in my fridge!

The trouble with getting rid of stuff

…is when it’s not just your stuff. Maybe it’s just an excuse I use to hold onto things we haven’t used in ages, but after 7 years of marriage not a lot of what we own is his and mine anymore, it’s ours. I don’t feel like I can just dump our entire DVD collection in the Goodwill box without going through it first with him, but he’s not as on-board with getting rid of everything as I am so waiting for him to flag the things he wants to keep is like waiting for someone to hand me a check for a million dollars. Continue reading The trouble with getting rid of stuff