If You Care, Leave It There: What To Do When You Find a Baby Animal

As spring transitions to summer each year, the Greenburgh Nature Center receives many questions from concerned Westchester residents regarding what to do when a baby or injured animal is found. Although we are happy to provide information on this issue, the Greenburgh Nature Center itself is not a rehabilitation center and the only people legally allowed to treat and release wild animals are wildlife rehabilitators licensed by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC). If you see a clear injury or are having doubts, please refrain from bringing any animals to the Nature Center and instead visit the DEC’s website for a list of licensed rehabilitators in your area.

The DEC reminds us all that late May to early June is peak birthing season for a variety of New York wildlife and it is not unusual to come across baby animals that appear to be orphaned or neglected. However, these young animals are in fact going through a normal process of learning how to survive on their own. Attempting to remove them from the wild often does more harm than good. Parents are usually still in the area checking in on their babies and they may delay their visits if they detect human interference. This is why it is so important to adhere to the DEC saying, “If You Care, Leave It There.”

For more information, please visit:

Wildlife Rehabilitators

Care of Young Wildlife

DEC Urges New Yorkers: If You Care, Leave It There

Students Learn Sustainable Habits at Seely Place School Earth Day

We hope everyone had a great Earth Day! On Friday, April 20, the Greenburgh Nature Center visited the Seely Place School to teach fourth and fifth graders about sustainable habits and renewable energy.

Zero Waste & Beyond!

Sustainability Intern, Noah Brennan and Special Projects Manager, Pam Miner lead an interactive program about how to practice Zero Waste through the three Rs of sustainability: reduce, reuse, and recycle. Students took turns spinning the Wheel of Waste and working together to decide in which bin each item belonged-trash, recycle, or compost. Then, their knowledge was put to the test in the Recycle Relay! In two teams, students retrieved materials from “Trash Mountain” and ran across the room to sort the waste into the appropriate bin. Students were buzzing with excitement as they successfully sorted the mountain. At the end of the session, students brainstormed ways that they could continue these sustainable habits in their daily lives such as walking to school, turning off the lights when they leave the room, and switching to reusable water bottles. What great ideas!

A Look at Renewable Energy & Cookie Mining

Naturalist Educator, John Mancuso, gave an engaging presentation explaining different types of energy and the importance of using renewable energy sources. Nonrenewable energy vs renewable energy – what’s the difference? Nonrenewable energy is derived from sources that will eventually run out like coal or oil and cause pollution when burned. Renewable energy is fuel that can never run out or is quickly replenished such as solar or wind energy, and created less of an impact on the environment when used to produce electricity.

Seely Earth Day Energy
John Mancuso teaching students at the Seely Place School about renewable energy.

To reinforce the information presented, John used a hands-on STEM-based activity called Cookie Mining. Students received a cookie and were instructed to mine the chocolate chips or “coal” from the cookie to demonstrate the economic and environmental issues of coal mining. Who knew learning about energy could be so sweet?

Thank you to everyone at the Seely Place School for participating in Earth Day and taking the time to learn about how we can live more sustainably. 

This program was offered in partnership with Con Edison.

Tick Season is Here – Learn How to Stay Safe While Having Fun in Nature

Blacklegged Ticks
Photo: Westchester Gov

As the warmer months approach, it’s important to be aware of everything coming to life in nature, including ticks. When spending time outdoors and at the Nature Center, please follow the New York State Department of Health tips for tick safety:

  • Wear light-colored clothing with a tight weave to spot ticks easily.
  • Wear enclosed shoes, long pants and a long-sleeved shirt. Tuck pant legs into socks or boots and shirt into pants.
  • Check clothes and any exposed skin frequently for ticks while outdoors.
  • Consider using insect repellent.
  • Stay on cleared, well-traveled trails. Walk in the center of trails. Avoid dense woods and bushy areas.
  • Avoid sitting directly on the ground or on stone walls.
  • Keep long hair tied back, especially when gardening.
  • Bathe or shower as soon as possible after going indoors (preferably within two hours) to wash off and more easily find ticks that may be on you.
  • Do a final, full-body tick check at the end of the day (also check children and pets), and remove ticks promptly.

For more information on ticks and tick borne diseases, please visit:
New York State Department of Health