James Terry, about Mega Pet Adoption Event; Photographer Laurie Wolf, about Viral Photo

James Terry—Hernando County Animal Services Manager and one of the organizers of the Mega Pet Adoption Event, to be held May 17-19 at the Hernando County Fairgrounds, offering upwards of 700 dogs and cats—explains how the idea for the extravaganza came together:

a coalition of leaders of Florida county animal shelters, in which Scott Trebatoski, Director of Hillsborough County Pet Resources, noted that he had participated in a similarly towering adoption extravaganza in his previous job, running the Jacksonville shelter. So, Terry recounts, the directors from Hillsborough, Pasco, Polk, Citrus and Hernando counties pooled efforts and resources to organize the Mega Pet Adoption Event, at which all animals  available for adoption will be spayed/neutered, vaccinated, and micro chipped. Terry discusses a further enticement: Thanks to sponsorships from Best Friends Animal Society and Pet Resources Foundation, Inc., adoption fees will be waived at the Mega Pet Adoption Event. He goes on to describe the logistics of the day—two large buildings devoted to dogs (arranged by size, in crates), and another building earmarked for cats—attendees will be allowed to bring their own dogs, so as to gauge how the present dog(s) get along with the potential adopted dog, there will be free parking at the Fairgrounds, and more. (https://www.hernandocounty.us/departments/departments-a-e/animal-services, https://www.facebook.com/events/437302286814258/)

 

 

Laurie Wolf—a wildlife photographer who lives in the area I do: Jupiter Farms, FL—recalls how, and when, she started taking pictures. Wolf touches on her painting and other artwork, for which the photography served as source material, but in the last five years, she notes, has taken on a life of its own, and become its own primary pursuit. She relates how she approaches a shooting day, typically accompanied by her husband—including the perhaps most jarring detail: They go to bed at 6pm and get up at 2am, explaining that they often drive three to four hours to reach that day’s location, and the early mornings are crucial for capturing the critters amidst breaking daylight. Some days, though, they don’t have to travel any further than their backyard: They installed boxes there, which have spawned tenants of various kinds of fauna, from wood ducks to screech owls to squirrels. Indeed, one of these boxes was the site of a recent, now-famous photo—an eastern screech owl in her nest with a baby duck—Wolf narrates the tale of seeing this improbable sight (her husband saw it first), photographing it, posting it on Facebook, where it quickly went viral, prompting the National Geographic to run the photo, alongside a story about the shot and Wolf. She also offers us iPhone-wielding amateur photographers a few tips for shooting better picture of animals and birds. (http://wildworksgallery.com/index.html) [Photo at top & other wildlife photos: Laurie Wolf]

COMEDY CORNER: Sean Donnelly’s “I Love My Bulldog” (http://seandonnellycomedy.com)

MUSIC: Rebekah Pulley’s “Talking Animals Theme, instrumentals

NAME THAT ANIMAL TUNE: Leonard Cohen’s “Bird On The Wire”

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About the author
Duncan Strauss is the producer-host of “Talking Animals,” which he launched at KUCI in California in 2003, combining his passions for animals, radio, journalism, music and comedy. The show has aired since late 2005 on Tampa’s WMNF. Strauss lives in Jupiter Farms, FL with his family, including four cats, two horses and one dog. He spends each day talking to those animals, and maintains they talk right back to him, an as yet unverified claim.

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