JACKSON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - Just like your pets are susceptible to injuries so is wildlife. Whether it's a sick, hurt or an orphaned alligator, pelican or even a squirrel the Wildlife Care And Rescue Center in Jackson County helps all kinds of wildlife from all over Mississippi.
But just like other non-profits the organization relies mostly on donations and right now the center's president says they are hurting for funding.
Wildlife Care and Rescue Center President Billy Payne holds a bared owl he's been raising since February. He says as a baby the owl fell out of its nest during a thunderstorm. Today the bird is almost ready to be released back into the wild.
Taking in these injured or orphaned animals and rehabilitating them is why the Wildlife Care and Rescue Center exists.
"Rehabilitate them and try our very best to release them into the wild," Payne said.
It takes a lot money to be able to transport, feed, treat and send them back into the wild.
"We are badly in need of donations to keep this facility up and running. And to try to provide our services to the public as best we can," said Payne.
Payne cares for several animals include a speckled king snake that was found with a parasite eating his tail.
Another animal under his care is a turtle which was wrapped in plastic rings when it was rescued.
Hundreds of animals are saved by the center's volunteers each month.
Every animal has a different story, but one thing is for sure their needs add up.
"Managing our organization, caging, medicine, feed," Payne said.
Payne says feeding birds of pray can run a tab of up to $6 a day. He also says care is labor intensive. But seeing these animals back in their nature makes it all worth it.
"It's a full grown bird and it can fly and we've taught it how to kill its own pray and everything. And when you get to release these things, well to me it's like winning the Super Bowl," Payne said.
The Wildlife Care and Rescue Center reaches out to businesses, cities and individuals for donations. Volunteers reached out to the City of Biloxi to get on the city's donation list, however the city says they simply don't have the funds available. If you are interested in volunteering or donating you can contact 228-669-2737 or find them on Facebook by searching Wildlife Care and Rescue Center, Inc.