NOBLE, Okla. (KFOR) – With the holiday weekend, many people will be spending time outdoors.
Officials at WildCare Oklahoma say many of the Fourth of July activities can have a negative impact on wildlife.
However, they say they don’t have to be harmful if people are mindful.
The organization released the following tips for watching out for wildlife this weekend:
- Clean up after gatherings: Cut plastic drink rings, rinse jars and containers, and properly dispose of all food and trash to make sure nothing is left behind to attract or trap wildlife. Litter from fireworks and other explosives can be choking hazards for wildlife and toxic.
- Clean up after fishing: Fishing line is hard for animals to see, so they can easily get tangled in it. Lures left behind often smell like bait, which can lead to animals ingesting them and suffering internal injuries.
- Leave it better than you found it: Pick up trash, fishing line, lures, plastic bags, and other items that can hurt wildlife or cause them to become entangled.
- Limit fireworks and loud noises in natural areas: Noise and lights from fireworks can cause wildlife to flee areas, run into roads, and fly into buildings. Birds and other animals will abandon nests, separating wild animals from their young due to stress. Try to keep firework celebrations limited and out of areas with a lot of wildlife.
- Slow down and watch for wildlife on roads and paths: Increased human activity in parks, on lakes, and in natural areas can cause wildlife to move and attempt to cross roads at unusual times.
- Help prevent forest fires: Be aware of burn bans in your area and make sure any allowable fires are constantly monitored. Ensure campfires and barbeques are completely out before leaving an area.
Officials say July 5 is typically a busy day for many animal rescues.
WildCare is open every day from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. to accept injured, ill, or orphaned wild animals for care.