Helen Jameson cradles a week-old fawn at her Blewett farm sanctuary.

Milk drive for vulnerable wildlife

Fundraiser proceeds will help Helen Jameson raise the week-old fawn and baby moose currently living at her Blewett farm sanctuary.

  • Jun. 18, 2014 6:00 a.m.



Most people would consider it a rare privilege to cradle a week-old fawn in their arms, but Helen Jameson got used to it a long time ago.

For over 45 years, Jameson has been nurturing and rehabilitating vulnerable wildlife on her Blewett farm. Currently she has a month-old moose and week-old fawn in enclosures that shield them from the bears in the area. Both of the animals were orphaned recently. But she said she won’t be sad to see them go.

“It’s a lot of work and a lot of expense. It’s good enough for me to see them alive. They can go back out into the forest and have their life. That’s the whole point of it,” she said.

Jameson has no way of predicting which animals she will be nursing from year to year. She raised a moose last year, and was surprised to find another one on her doorstep only months later, dropped off by Creston conservation officer James Barber.

“He called me up and said ‘I’m sending over a moose’. I said you can’t be sending me a moose. I had a moose last year. Maybe they skip a year before I get another moose. But he said he’s coming, and it’s just new.”

“He’s only a baby,” said Jameson, “He lost his mother when he was just about a day old. They found her dead and he was alone, hungry. That’s where I come in,” she said.

Jameson explained all this to the Star while the calf suckled her fingers. “He’s going to be pretty disappointed when he figures out there’s no milk in there,” she said.

James recently had to rig up a small tarp to help protect the fawn from the weather, because it hadn’t yet learned how to shield itself from the elements. She said the fawn is still nervous around her, but is healthy and should be able to return to the wild along with her moose companion.

This year may be one of Jameson’s last as the sole wildlife rehabilitator in the West Kootenay. Her husband Syd is sick and she feels it’s time for someone else to take over her responsibilities.

She hopes to retire in the next year or two, but said so far people interested in the gig have been put off when they heard about her current wage: nothing.

“I guess most people think if they’re going to do something like this they need a government salary or something,” she said. “It’s a lot of work and you don’t get paid to do it. But if anybody feels in their heart they want to help out, they should.”

The Nelson Save-On-Foods will be running a fundraiser from 11 to 5 on Thursday, June 19. Last year they raised just shy of $3,000 for Helen’s farm. This year the emphasis is specifically on milk, because both the fawn and the moose will be consuming enormous amounts of it.

“Ordinary cow’s milk is bad enough when you’re wanting gallons of it,” said Jameson. She needs goat’s milk.

Assistant manager Greg Wheaton was effusive about Helen’s sanctuary and said Save-On-Foods was thrilled to contribute to the farm’s future.

 

 

Just Posted

VIDEO: How to use naloxone to stop a fentanyl overdose

ANKORS’ Chloe Sage shows what to do when someone is overdosing

Slocan Valley added to communities on flooding evac alert

Kootenay Lake is expected to reach flooding level in Nelson by Friday

PHOTOS: Cantering like a boss

Jacky Cooper was in Blewett this weekend to teach at the Nelson and District Riding Club

UPDATED: Hwy 3 west of Creston remains closed due to mudslide

A detour is available on the Kootenay Lake Ferry, but commuters could see wait times

COLUMN: Making a wildlife smart community

David White writes how property owners can avoid conflict with nature

VIDEO: After the floods, comes the cleanup as Grand Forks rebuilds

Business owners in downtown wonder how long it will take for things to go back to normal

UPDATED: BC Ferries freezes plans to nix fuel rebates pending government funds

Claire Trevena says she is ‘extremely disappointed’ by a plan by BC Ferries to remove fuel rebates

B.C. sues Alberta over bill that could ‘turn oil taps off’

Lawsuit is the latest move in the two provinces’ ongoing feud over the Kinder Morgan pipeline

Liberal government introduces measures to update Canada’s family laws

Justice officials say there have not been substantial updates to federal family laws in 20 years

B.C. mom threatens legal action against sunscreen company

Caleb Jordan, 6, was covered in blisters 20 minutes after using Banana Boat sunscreen

BC Games Society president to step down

Kelly Mann says it’s time for a change after 26 years with the society

B.C. politicians framed by anonymous sticky-note doodler

Insider has been posting caricatures from the B.C. legislature to social media

27 years since initial police probe, polygamist leader to be sentenced in June

Prosecutor recommend up to 6 months jail, defence asks for conditional or absolute discharge

Governments kick in cash for B.C. farmers, food processors

Ottawa, Victoria contribute $14 million over five years to help develop new products, processes

Most Read