Animals do, in fact, depend on people in countless ways. Many species' very existence is tied to the fact that humans recognize that 1) species are singularly unique and, are special on ethereal and ephemeral levels including social, religious, financial, recreational as well as others, and 2) numerous plants and animals have served human-kind since its existence in ways ranging from, simply, food supplies, to serving as a catalyst for our medicines, as curatives. etc. to, on the other end of the spectrum, simply something meant to bring us joy and pleasure. The Balsam Mountain Trust utilizes living ambassadors in many ways. First, the botanical diversity on the Preserve is utilized as a scientific and cultural resource. These "creatures" provide us with a base of knowledge that can be, on the one hand, simply, enjoyed for their aesthetic value to where they are studied for their pharmacologic properties and utilized as medicines to aid in healing, preventing and/or curing diseases, etc.
The zoological (animal) side presents us with the opportunity to "get up close and personal" with a wide array of critters that are furry, feathered, skinned or scaly. The A.D.O.P.T. program is a way for each donor to contribute to the health and well-being of our living collection and to assist the Trust's education programming by providing incredible teaching tools. Each of our animals, be it eagle, falcon, owl, snake, lizard or turtle, require carefully planned and proper diets which provide the best food for captive animals. These diets, while not complicated, are purchased from laboratories skilled in the art of providing the highest quality food for captive wild animals. These diets, along with vitamin and mineral supplements, must be purchased. The reason captive animals are fed a laboratory-prepared diet is because these foods are "clean." This means that there is very little chance of our resident critters contracting any illnesses, diseases, parasites, etc. from the food they eat. This also means there is less chance of something happening to them that would make unscheduled veterinary visits necessary.
The A.D.O.P.T. program is a chance for you to "adopt" one or more animals which will provide the funds necessary to keep them in top shape. (Should your "adopted" animal die, be transferred to another facility, etc., the Trust reserves the right to apply any remaining funds to another animal; ADOPTive parent(s) will be notified and, if possible, may pick another critter to ADOPT for the remainder of their ADOPT year). Everything will be done, according to availability, to have parent(s) ADOPT a new critter at or above their current $ level of ADOPTion for the remainder of the year.
Your A.D.O.P.T. gift is good for one year at which time we hope you'll renew. This way you'll never be an "empty nester."
The benefits of being an ADOPTive parent include:
1) The wonderful feeling you'll get (and can share with family and friends) knowing you're providing the resources necessary to care for the Trust's animal ambassadors
2) A direct link to the conservation education programs (and resulting benefits) in which your ADOPTed critter is involved
3) A unique one-on-one session with your ADOPTed critter, i.e., the signing of the ADOPTion papers; a photo session with parent(s) and critter(s); each ADOPTive parent(s) will receive an 8x10 color photo of you and your ADOPTed critter - this is a very emotional moment; and personally signed by the animal you've ADOPTED; PLUS one additional annual visit to a mutually agreed upon location, e.g., the Nature Center, a school or place of business, etc.
4) An invitation for you to bring your family and friends to the Nature Center for an up-close and personal counseling session with your ADOPTed critter. Or, we can bring your ADOPTed critter to your home on the Preserve
5) Updates on your ADOPTed critter
5) If you're a Corporate ADOPTive parent sponsor the Trust will schedule a time to bring your "child" to the office and provide an educational program for your employees
6) A photo of the the ADOPTive parent(s) and critter posted on the Trust website
7) Schools may ADOPT our critters as well. If you're interested in your class ADOPTing we can make arrangements for your class.
ADOPT rates (if you're interested in ADOPTing an animal for more than 2 years we can discuss further discounted rates):
Note: ADOPT donations are due at time of ADOPTion
Freedom - American Bald Eagle $1,000/year; $1,500/2 years
Shadow - Barred Owl $400/year; $600/2 years
Rusty (female) or Chayton (male) - North American Kestrel $250/year; $375/2 years
Rasta - Eastern Screech Owl $250/year; $375/2 years
Timbala - Timber Rattlesnake $50/year; $75/2 years
Cooper - Copperhead $50/year; $75/2 years
Oynx - Black Rat Snake $50/year; $75/2 years
Cornelius - Red Rat Snake $50/year; $75/2 years
Diablo - Sinaloan Milk Snake $50/year; $75/2 years
Bella and Buttercup - Eastern Box Turtles $50/year; $75/2 years