For more than 25 years, Betty Balcom has been committed to animal rescue, helping save countless animals lives and enriching her community in the Kootenays immensely.

Born and raised in Kimberley, Balcom’s career has been spent within Rocky Mountain School District 6, with all the girl work along with animals done on a purely volunteer basis, including with organizations like Northern Lights Wildlife Society (NLWS), OWL Rehab, WildsafeBC and the BC Conservation Officer Service (BCCOS).

“When animals are in need I just go, there’s no question, ” Balcom said. “It’s just a passion. ”

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Balcom works closely with the BCCOS plus Ministry biologists, who will call her out when they require assistance with birds of prey or bear cubs when they need support. Usually how she gets involved is someone will contact the RAPP line, for instance when they spot a bear cub on its own, such as on November 27 in Fernie.

A woman noticed the bear cub the size of a 10 week old puppy wandering through the snow in her yard, and noticed after hours of observation that there was simply no mother in sight, so the girl called the particular BCCOS. The biologist then made the call that it was a cub born this year and the call was put into NLWS, who dispatched Balcom.

At the time, Balcom has been already down in Wynndel attending to another carry, so the lady had to leave to come in order to Fernie, as they knew it had been going to need a lot more help.

Balcom then handled the capture of the keep cub and organized the particular transportation to NLWS, who are located in Smithers, B. C. Balcom has a good group of people who she can rely on for rising to the occasion to transport the bear. Once they get to Kamloops, Bandstra Trucking is their number-one trucking company that takes the animals the particular rest of the way up in order to Northern Lamps.

“Kimberley is a longtime volunteer associated with NLWS and one of a handful of special catch volunteers within the province, ” said NLWS co-founder Angelika Langen.

“Her dedication to help wildlife in need will be unshakable plus she drops everything ahead to their own aid. She is supported by family and friends, without whom this would not be possible. Not only does she inspire others and donates her time, but she often also covers costs with regard to gas plus feed regarding the creatures she rescues. We are truly grateful to have the girl on our team. ”

The particular process intended for injured birds of prey is fairly similar, except the BCCOS isn’t usually involved. Balcom had actually got a call for a bald eagle that had been hit on the road the same day as this interview, upon Dec. 1. On this particular occasion, Balcom sent the friend of hers, because she wasn’t able to attend to it herself.

With birds associated with prey, the particular animal is usually taken in order to a veterinary clinic and then flown out to OWL Rehab in Delta, B. C. by Pacific Coastal, who always provide the service free of charge. They’re then flown back whenever they are able to be returned in order to the wild.

“Between Pacific cycles Coastal plus Bandster Trucking and Northern Lights and OWL — they do a lot within our communities for us, ” Balcom said. “If you’ve seen any of my posts, I always thank absolutely everybody that’s already been involved plus at the bottom I always say, this takes a community to make these protects happen. ”

Balcom stated that her favourite part of the work is usually seeing pets like carry cubs returned back to the wild after being successfully rescued and rehabilitated — that full cycle associated with return.

Often the animals are returned very close to the areas they were rescued from, with the particular NLWS working with a biologist to determine a good spot.

She has worked with numerous parrots of victim and endure cubs this season, and said that each case has its own draw, yet mentioned one particular story that will stood out from this year.

Balcom was in Fantastic grabbing the fawn to get Little Mittens Animal Rescue Association, but had to call them and say that she’d been called out in order to a bear cub save, and it turned out to be a grizzly.

“I’ve never had one, it’s very special, ” Balcom said. “It’s a very powerful pet, it was very nice to be a part of that recovery. Every rescue has its draw. ”

She mentioned that the girl desire in order to do animal rescue arose when the girl realized that there just was not a lot of options for wildlife support.

“So that’s when I started reaching out to other areas and finding out who has facilities to be able to take animals, then that’s when We went gung ho along with it, ” Balcom explained. “Then I simply volunteered for everybody that might take a volunteer on. ”

Over the years, the lady has noticed that the relationships have been forged plus flourished between the Ministry and the BCCO with groups like OWL or NLWS and as the result, the particular BCCOS is able to hand these kinds of cases over to wildlife management teams which frees all of them up pertaining to their other work.

“It’s great to see that the working relationship between the rehabbers, the particular volunteers plus Conservation and Ministry staff has come a long, long way over the years in a positive manner, ” Balcom said, adding she said she as well as built a good working partnership with the particular BCCOS, the Ministry Biologist as well as the rehabbers.

“I wholeheartedly feel that these people have the particular toughest jobs going. I actually tell them that every single time I get the opportunity. ”

Balcom declared that living here in the Rocky Hill Trench, it is important that the particular average resident do their particular part to learn how in order to cohabitate along with the area’s wildlife. From managing attractants, not letting animals get comfortable in yards or even being vigilant about mother deers within fawning season, Balcom stated, “as humans we require to do better by what we do in our communities. ”

This will help to slow the numbers associated with animals that need to be sent in order to places such as OWL or NLWS. In closing, Balcom just asked that anyone who reads this particular consider donating to these groups to allow all of them to continue to do the particular wonderful work they do meant for the province’s animals.

To report an inured, distressed or orphaned animal, call the RAPP line at 1-877-952-7277.

paul. [email protected]

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