Volunteers help rescue build a barn

Jan. 19, 2013 @ 04:49 PM

Earlier in the month, a group of college students came to Carolina Waterfowl Rescue in Indian Trail to help them build on their new property. 

The students came courtesy of a grant from the PetFinder organization. 

"It was very hectic, but fun at the same time," Executive Director Jennifer Gordon said. "We were very busy and had a lot of people here, but we got a lot done...I think we accomplished a lot more than we thought we were going to."

Gordon wanted to focus most of their efforts on building a new barn on the property. After that, she had smaller things they wanted to accomplish. 

The barn is completed, they are waiting for electricity. In addition, they put up 1,500 feet of the 2,000 foot fence. They dug a new pond and laid about 5,000 square feet of sod. They also built smaller structures throughout the property. 

"We got a lot accomplished while they were here," Gordon said. 

Carolina Waterfowl Rescue moved into its first permanent location last year. Since then they have bee n working to make the property a place where waterfowl and other birds can heal and be safe. 

Most of the barn will be used as a hospital, but with baby season quickly approaching, half of it will be used to accommodate the influx of birds they receive in the spring. Part of it has an attached, covered aviary, so baby birds can go outside without fear from predators. 

The volunteers came from all over the country. They were college-aged and some older people. 

"It was a big, huge group of different types of people and we were amazed at how hard everyone worked," Gordon said. "I think we had a lot of fun while we worked, too. It seemed like everyone got along really well."

This was the first time the grant had ever gone to a bird rescue. 

"I think it was a big difference," Gordon said. "We heard a lot of comments that it was a lot different than they were expecting. I don't think people realize how much personality bird have...people were surprised by how attached they got to the birds." 

The immediate future will be spent preparing for the spring, when baby birds will fill the facility. 

"We have such an influx of birds coming in that we can't do much but care for the babies," Gordon said. 

After that, they will figure out what is next on the to-do list. 

They have applied for a grant to begin working on a nature trail. They hope to make a trail that people can walk down. They can feed the ducks at the pond and go bird-watching. It will be more geared toward getting families and children outside. It will also be the first part of the facility that is open to the public.