The ultimate goal of wildlife rehabilitation is always to return animals to the natural ecosystem where they belong. However, some of our patients aren’t fit for release, and are dependent on human care for life. These very special animals get to live out their days here at For Fox Sake, where they help us teach the public about native wildlife.
Our presentations are custom-created for each audience and age group, and can cover a wide variety of topics including humane coexistence with wildlife, native Tennessee ecology, apex predator appreciation, invasive species management, how to help a wild animal in need, myths and misconceptions, and more!
We are fully licensed and fully insured as wildlife exhibitors and wildlife educators, and look forward to sharing our love of the natural world with you.
Although our ambassadors are very tame, they are still wild animals at heart and are not pets. For the safety of our ambassadors and you, our animals may not be pet or handled by the public.
We love and respect service animals and the work they provide. However, due to the nature of our programs, service animals cannot be present. The presence of dogs agitates and stresses our ambassadors, creating unsafe conditions for ourselves and our audience, and would fundamentally alter the audience experience.
It’s suitable that T’challa has a superhero’s name, because he also has a superhero’s backstory! When T’challa was only a few days old, a raptor captured him and carried him away for dinner. By some miracle, the bird dropped him in the driveway of someone who knew he needed help.
As one might expect, being dropped on the head as a baby made T’challa “special.” He has developmental delays and never developed the wild instincts he needed to survive in the natural world, and he developed an unusual attachment and bond to humans. We’re sad that this little fellow can’t return to the wild, but he’s a wonderful ambassador for his species and is absolutely adored here at For Fox Sake!
Lulu had a rough life before making it to For Fox Sake! She was rescued as an orphan after her parents and siblings passed away, and was rescued by a kind passer-by. Since starlings are invasive and not native to the United States, it is permissible to have them as pets without a permit.
Lulu and her owner shared a very special bond, so, when her owner was diagnosed with a terminal illness, it was devastating for all involved. Her owner chose to rehome her to our education program so she can live out her life in expert hands and help teach people about songbirds and invasive species.
Lulu “talks” using human words, sings along to classical music, plays games, and loves to travel. She’s happy to help share information about European starlings and other invasive species!
Eastern Box Turtle
Fable survived horrific abuse at the hands of some very cruel and careless people, but her story ends with “happily ever after.” She was held captive for years by people who painted her shell in dozens of layers of paint and fingernail polish. It had caused serious damage to the structure of her shell over time and undoubtedly caused her serious long-term stress.
When her abusers grew tired of her, they jammed her into rocks on a cliff face, where people later found her and worked as a team to pry her out. She was injured in the process. Although the ultimately recovered from the injuries to her shell, and we were eventually able to safely remove the paint, she can never be returned to the wild.
A box turtle can only be released exactly where it was originally found, because it will otherwise spend its entire life trying to get home (and will almost always die in the process). We don’t know where Fable originally came from, so she has to remain in human care for life. We hope she can help teach people about the importance of compassion for wildlife!
For Fox Sake and For The Shell Of It are home to twelve non-releasable pond sliders. All of these turtles were victims of the pet trade who were kept in appalling conditions including filthy, tiny aquariums with inadequate ultraviolet light and poor diet.
Over time, these beautiful creatures developed metabolic bone diseases that deformed their shells and spines. They also came ago us with infections in their shells and under their skin.
Although treatment has enabled us to relieve these turtles’ suffering and give them a better quality of life, all of our pond sliders are in such poor shape that they can’t be returned to the wild, so they will live out their days in our care as members of our ambassador program.
Our pond sliders include red-ear, yellow-bellied, and Cumberland sliders, as well as hybrids between these, and range in size from three to twelve inches in length. They can be suitable for nearly any education program and can help share information about responsible care for wildlife, reptile sentience, and the pitfalls of irresponsible exotic pet ownership.