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West Virginia Wildlife
Wildlife Center
Patrick McMurtry Native Wildlife Up Close

May 23, 2012
Reporter: Patrick McMurtry
Videographer: Brad Rice


If you're out in the woods long enough, you'll probably hear a tom turkey gobbling up a storm...and you might even hear a coyote howl but hopefully you'll never hear an angry one like this. Spend a day at the West Virginia Wildlife Center and you'll see, and hear, all kinds of things you'll never experience in the wild and that's biologist Gene Thorn's favorite thing about working here.

"Today's day and age, you can do research on the computer, but there's nothing like watching the behavior of a wild animal and that's something I encourage people when they come here. You can sit on a bench in the bear pen as long as you like and you're going to see behavior you wouldn't see in a picture of a bear." says Thorn.

You can also watch an otter swim, check out the massive rack forming on a couple of bucks, or watch a couple mountain lions just meandering around. This really is a wildlife center in every sense of the word and there's always something new to check out.

"We have 3 new wolf pups and they've acclimated with the adult and become a pack. They were 3 males and we put them in with a male adult and that's worked out really well. We also have a brand new baby buffalo calf. It's two weeks old, he or she, we don't know what it is, the mother's defending it, we are hoping it's a female." says Thorn.

Wolfs, buffalo, deer, otters and bobcats...they're all here where you can see and hear them for yourselves. You see, the more you experience the wildlife here, the more you'll learn, and that's Gene's goal...to get as many people as possible exposed to these beautiful animals in their beautiful setting.

"The educational value of coming to the Wildlife Center, you can see different species of animals that you wouldn't normally see in the wild." says Thorn.

And some you would see, like this two day old fawn, well, chances are you'll never get this close and personal to animals like this. Another great thing is the price...admission is very low, and in fact, in the fall and winter you can get in for free.

LEARN MORE at the W. Va. DNR


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