Archive | January 2023

Annual Reports

I think I’ve found what might finally do me in as a rehabber….

Online Annual Report report filing.

Every year we are supposed to file reports of EVERY animal, turtle and bird that we take in. If we have it more than 24 hours, we have to list what it is, where it came from , who brought it, when it came in , when it died or was released and where we let it go. It has never been an easy task. I am not good at keeping up with paperwork. My notebook where I usually write this stuff down is covered with coffee rings and bird shit. Some of the pages are chewed out. You get the picture. I am not Marie Condo. Organization is not in my vocabulary. Keeping the little fuzzy things alive is my priority, not providing excellent paperwork.

We always filed these reports on paper. You can shuffle paper, you can erase paper, you can write sloppy where the facts might not exactly be clear. You can set your coffee on it and it smudges. Not this year. This year we have to do it on computer. I’m 68 years old. I grew up with data processing cards. I played “The Oregon Trail” and died of dysentery every time. I played “PONG” for Godsake.

I do not understand spread sheets. I applied for a job once and they asked me if I was fluent with “Excel”. I replied that “Oh yes, I excel at many things, the computer just isn’t one of them.” (I did not get the job). I can do facebook. I can surf the web. I AM fluent in Amzon and they know me well. Basically, I can look up shit when I need to, but I have a book where I wrote down how to do it. (it also has all my passwords because I can barely remember the dog’s name most days.)

I am though, open to trying new things… when absolutely forced…. by someone else. I gamely got a single cup of coffee and spent a hour trying to find the forms I needed to fill out on line. By the third cup of coffee, I figured out how to open them and begin…….

Christ on a cracker! It took over 5 hours instead of the usual 2 or 3. I have no idea if everything is on there or if it even sent. I was trying to review it and figure out how to add in a couple I missed (I tend to write some intakes down on scraps of paper) and the whole thing disappeared and said “Thank you for submitting your report” I couldn’t even make a copy first.

It was full of those little drop down things for counties and dates. I finally figured out how to type the first two letters of the county in and it would take me to all the ones that started with those two letters (You have to go through this twice for every entry), but the damn date thing started with todays date every time, so you had to scroll back a year to the date you wanted. (you also have to do this TWO damn times for each animal).

And when you are doing it on the computer, it is soooo obvious that you didn’t have any clue how to spell peoples names, or that a bird shit on their address (I used to get away with printing it badly and hope for the best.) On the computer, not even my tears could smudge it into illegibility.

It probably would be easier if I kept tidier and more concise records, but when you have a squirrel biting the hell out of you in one hand and the pen in the other, that’s tricky. Then there are the times that you are meeting someone in a parking lot and you write the info on the back of your grocery list because you just want to get the hell out of there before the cops pick you up for suspicion of dealing drugs not squirrels. Oh, then throw in the times when they give it to Jimmy and he writes it down…or not. I’m lucky if 3/4 of the animals get written down. let alone correctly.

Now they have a proper space for “Disposition of the animal” (I’m telling ya, the “disposition” of 80% of these animals is down right nasty most of the time) But noooo, that’s not what they mean. They want to know what happened to the animal and WHEN. Ok, I got 16 squirrels and one of them drops dead, how the hell do I know who it is? They all look the same! As to WHEN it died? Well, see “They all look the same”. I’d much rather say, “I took in 37 squirrels this year. Some died somewhere along the line. Some didn’t die. I released the live ones.”

Do they really think I want to keep any of those rotten little buggers? Are they afraid I am going to run a black market of used possums? Maybe I am selling raccoons out of my trunk in those parking lots!

Release dates. That can be pretty tricky when it comes to deer and bobcats. Is it the first day they decide to jump the fence? It could be the first time they stay out all night and I sit up worrying. Should I write that down? do I change it when they come home? And really, in the dark, we are back to “They all look the same” Was that Thing One or Thing Two in Levi’s yard? Does Levi’s yard actually count as released? What about the bobcats? They have DOGGY DOOR for crying out loud! I don’t ask where they been.

I’m probably going to get some questions on this report from Lansing. I won’t be able to answer them. It wouldn’t let me make that copy. Do they throw you in jail for that shit? I had to agree in the beginning that all the information I provided was correct. I hope that just covers what was already filled out. I’m pretty sure of my name and address being correct.

If not, send a squirrel with a nail file….ask for Guido. I know he’ll do it.