UNTAMED: Season 1

The first season of UNTAMED: Life is Wild aired in spring/summer 2019 and looked at the wild and often perilous world of wildlife, as seen through the eyes of the patients of the Wildlife Center of Virginia. These episodes offer an unprecedented look at the work of the Wildlife Center and each has a unique focus—there are episodes on the Center’s work with Bald Eagles, opossums, snakes, owls, and more.

This online video library offers a compendium of materials that support each episode of UNTAMED, including patient stories and videos, additional learning resources, and worksheets and activities for students who are watching UNTAMED as a part of classroom learning on biology, natural history, and the environment.

Season 1 Episodes

Episode 101: Black Bears

Episode One of UNTAMED focuses on Black Bears. In this episode, Wildlife Center staff members illustrate what it’s like to care for Black Bear cubs, explain how we’re working to understand and treat mange in wild bear populations and demonstrate what you should do if you encounter a Black Bear in need of help.

VA Department of Game and Inland Fisheries [now VA Department of Wildlife Resources] Black Bear biologist Jamie Sajecki gives us perspective on feeding wildlife, and our host Ed Clark explains our roles in being good bear neighbors.

Bears Featured in This Episode
People Featured in This Episode
For Classrooms

Looking for ideas on how to incorporate the stories and lessons of Untamed into the classroom? The Wildlife Center is happy to provide these original worksheets and activity pages for teachers and educators. Designed to highlight the major themes and ideas presented in each episode, these activities are best used in combination with a classroom viewing.

Are you using these materials and resources in your classroom? We are eager to hear from you! Please let us know, so we can share your classroom projects and experiences with other teachers. Contact us at edu@wildlifecenter.org.

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Episode 102: Bald Eagles

Episode Two of UNTAMED focuses on Bald Eagles. In this episode, Wildlife Center staff members discuss the conservation successes of Bald Eagles, as well as the threats that eagles still face today, including lead poisoning and vehicle collisions. Buddy, the Wildlife Center's non-releasable Bald Eagle ambassador, is featured.

Eagles Featured in This Episode
People Featured in This Episode
  • Dr. Ernesto Dominguez, former Wildlife Hospital Director
Related Content
  • Watch our Critter Cams! Buddy, along with several other education ambassadors, often appears on Critter Cam 1. 
  • Remember the Rock Stars? Buddy wasn't the only eaglet from the Norfolk Botanical Garden nest cam to come to the Center; in 2011, his little siblings arrived after their mother was hit and killed by a plane.
  • Help us care for Buddy through our Caring for Critters sponsorship program. You'll get all the inside news on Buddy through regular email updates!
  • Interested in learning more about avian anatomy? Check out labeled raptor radiographs of patients at the Center.
     
For Classrooms

Looking for ideas on how to incorporate the stories and lessons of UNTAMED into the classroom? The Wildlife Center is happy to provide these original worksheets and activity pages for teachers and educators. Designed to highlight the major themes and ideas presented in each episode, these activities are best used in combination with a classroom viewing.  

Are you using these materials and resources in your classroom? We are eager to hear from you! Please let us know, so we can share your classroom projects and experiences with other teachers. Contact us at edu@wildlifecenter.org

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Episode 103: Turtles

Episode Three of UNTAMED focuses on a variety of turtle species and the challenges they face in the wild. In this episode, Wildlife Center staff members discuss the causes of admission for both terrestrial and aquatic turtles, including vehicle collisions, swallowing fish hooks, pesticides, and more. The Center's hospital director describes how these injuries are treated, and our host Ed Clark reviews how humans can change their behavior to help turtles. 

Turtles in This Episode
  • Snapping Turtle #17-2211
  • Sheldon, Box Turtle #13-1342
People Featured in This Episode
For Classrooms

Looking for ideas on how to incorporate the stories and lessons of Untamed into the classroom? The Wildlife Center is happy to provide these original worksheets and activity pages for teachers and educators. Designed to highlight the major themes and ideas presented in each episode, these activities are best used in combination with a classroom viewing.

Are you using these materials and resources in your classroom? We are eager to hear from you! Please let us know, so we can share your classroom projects and experiences with other teachers. Contact us at edu@wildlifecenter.org.

Related Content
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Episode 104: Owls

Two Eastern Screech-owls sitting side by side looking with wide eyes into the cameraEpisode Four of UNTAMED focuses on a variety of owl species found around the world. The Wildlife Center team discusses the amazing adaptations of owls and what makes them so unique as patients. The team explains the common injuries in owl patients and the causes for admission that are, unfortunately, often human-caused. Dr. Karra and rehabilitator Brie explain what the wildlife medicine and rehabilitation process is like for a variety of owl species found in Virginia, and outreach coordinator Alex shares Quinn the Great Horned Owl's story.

 

Owls Featured in this Episode
People Featured in This Episode
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For Classrooms

Looking for ideas on how to incorporate the stories and lessons of UNTAMED into the classroom? The Wildlife Center is happy to provide these original worksheets and activity pages for teachers and educators. Designed to highlight the major themes and ideas presented in each episode, these activities are best used in combination with a classroom viewing.

Episode 105: Opossums

Episode Five of UNTAMED features the Virginia Opossum, the only marsupial found in the United States. Opossums may be common, but they are amazingly unique and adaptable creatures that can be found right in our own backyards. Host Ed Clark highlights a wide variety of special opossum adaptations and explains how simple changes in human behavior can help these animals.   Meet one of the Center's education opossums, and hear outreach coordinator Alex Wehrung talk about how education ambassadors help the Center to elevate the effectiveness of our programs.

"I definitely think that these education opossums help people to not only appreciate opossums more, but understand them more." -- Alex Wehrung, Wildlife Center of Virginia
Opossums Featured in This Episode
People Featured in This Episode
Related Content
For Classrooms

Looking for ideas on how to incorporate the stories and lessons of Untamed into the classroom? The Wildlife Center is happy to provide these original worksheets and activity pages for teachers and educators. Designed to highlight the major themes and ideas presented in each episode, these activities are best used in combination with a classroom viewing.  

Are you using these materials and resources in your classroom? We are eager to hear from you! Please let us know, so we can share your classroom projects and experiences with other teachers. Contact us at edu@wildlifecenter.org

Related Videos
Learn More

Episode 106: Snakes

Episode Six of UNTAMED features snakes – a family of wild animals that invoke fear in many people. During this episode, Center staff members highlight the beauty and mystery of snakes and encourage others to foster a respect for this highly misunderstood group of animals. Common causes of admission and injury are highlighted, and host Ed Clark gives viewers several ways to help our wild snake neighbors.

"It's encouraging to talk with receptive homeowners about the benefits of having snakes in nature ... we're not going to be able to convince everyone to love snakes as much as we do here at the Wildlife Center, but we hope to provide enough education to foster a tolerance for these species." -- Maggie McCartney, Wildlife Center of Virginia
Snakes Featured in This Episode
People Featured in This Episode
Related Content
For Classrooms

Looking for ideas on how to incorporate the stories and lessons of UNTAMED into the classroom? The Wildlife Center is happy to provide these original worksheets and activity pages for teachers and educators. Designed to highlight the major themes and ideas presented in each episode, these activities are best used in combination with a classroom viewing.

Are you using these materials and resources in your classroom? We are eager to hear from you! Please let us know, so we can share your classroom projects and experiences with other teachers. Contact us at edu@wildlifecenter.org.

Related Videos
Learn More

Episode 107: Unusual Species

Episode Seven of UNTAMED highlights a variety of more "unusual species" treated at the Wildlife Center. The Center typically admits more than 150 different species each year -- while most of these animals are often the birds, mammals, and reptiles whose homes are in and around our own backyards and neighborhoods, Center staff are always prepared for any animal that might come through the door, even if we only see that species once every year or so!  When the Center admits an unusual or uncommon species of wildlife, the staff relies on their extensive knowledge of natural history, as well as creativity and resourcefulness.

Some unusual species treated at the Center are rarely admitted due to their secretive lifestyle; some are uncommon admissions because, as a species, they are in trouble.  

"We're happy to help these animals because amphibian populations worldwide are facing a lot of pressure. In some parts of the world, there have been losses of as much as 90% of the amphibian populations with entire species of frogs and toads being lost to extinction." -- Ed Clark, Wildlife Center of Virginia
Unusual Species Featured in This Episode
People Featured in This Episode
Related Content
For Classrooms

Looking for ideas on how to incorporate the stories and lessons of UNTAMED into the classroom? The Wildlife Center is happy to provide these original worksheets and activity pages for teachers and educators. Designed to highlight the major themes and ideas presented in each episode, these activities are best used in combination with a classroom viewing.

Are you using these materials and resources in your classroom? We are eager to hear from you! Please let us know, so we can share your classroom projects and experiences with other teachers. Contact us at edu@wildlifecenter.org.

Related Videos
Learn More

Episode 108: Songbirds

Episode Eight of UNTAMED highlights the diverse group of passerines which we often call "songbirds." Millions of people worldwide identify themselves as bird-watchers and love spending time outdoors watching birds, whether on intense birding expeditions, or simply watching birds in their own backyards. But birds are under pressure and are presented with many human-caused dangers in their lives. Learn how our daily behaviors impact birds all over the world and learn what you can do to help songbirds. 

"Migratory birds travel a long distance in their annual life cycle to get from nesting grounds all the way to their wintering grounds. Many of those birds face great risks along the way, and that's one of the great reasons we need to be concerned about more than just our own backyard." --Ed Clark, Wildlife Center of Virginia
Songbirds Featured in This Episode
Related Content
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For Classrooms

Looking for ideas on how to incorporate the stories and lessons of UNTAMED into the classroom? The Wildlife Center is happy to provide these original worksheets and activity pages for teachers and educators. Designed to highlight the major themes and ideas presented in each episode, these activities are best used in combination with a classroom viewing.

Are you using these materials and resources in your classroom? We are eager to hear from you! Please let us know, so we can share your classroom projects and experiences with other teachers. Contact us at edu@wildlifecenter.org.

Episode 109: Bats

Episode Nine of UNTAMED focuses on bats -- a diverse group of flying mammals that humans often associate with folklore, legends, ghost stories, and scary tales. But we have more in common with bats than we think -- these tiny mammals are socially intelligent and can have a rich social structure and means of communication with each other. Bats are not only fascinating, but they are also quite beneficial to our environment and play an important role in the habitats we share with them. These animals are in need of our help now more than ever as they face population declines and serious problems, most of which originate from humans.

Join the Center staff plus local bat rehabilitator and expert Leslie Sturges, with The Save Lucy Campaign, and learn more about these amazing wild animals. 

"Bats are singing, they're showing off -- all these things that people do. I think sometimes we forget that everybody's out there looking for enough food, an appropriate mate, a safe place to live, and a good place to raise their babies. Bats are doing that too -- they just tend to do it in the middle of the night." Leslie Sturges, The Save Lucy Campaign
Bats Featured in This Episode
People Featured in This Episode
Related Content
Learn More
For Classrooms

Looking for ideas on how to incorporate the stories and lessons of UNTAMED into the classroom? The Wildlife Center is happy to provide these original worksheets and activity pages for teachers and educators. Designed to highlight the major themes and ideas presented in each episode, these activities are best used in combination with a classroom viewing.  

Are you using these materials and resources in your classroom? We are eager to hear from you! Please let us know, so we can share your classroom projects and experiences with other teachers. Contact us at edu@wildlifecenter.org

Episode 110: Vultures

Episode 10 of UNTAMED features vultures -- nature's clean-up crew. These animals are sometimes thought of as "gross" or may have a sinister reputation associated with death, but Wildlife Center staff explain how these special birds are not just an important part of our ecosystem but can be beautiful and charismatic as well. Learn more about vultures and meet Buttercup, the Center's non-releasable resident Black Vulture, who has his own cult following!

"Not everyone sees the beauty in these species, but without the vultures in the world it would not be as pretty of a place." -- Kelsey Pleasants, The Wildlife Center of Virginia
Vultures Featured in This Episode
People Featured in This Episode
Related Content
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For Classrooms

Looking for ideas on how to incorporate the stories and lessons of UNTAMED into the classroom? The Wildlife Center is happy to provide these original worksheets and activity pages for teachers and educators. Designed to highlight the major themes and ideas presented in each episode, these activities are best used in combination with a classroom viewing.  

Are you using these materials and resources in your classroom? We are eager to hear from you! Please let us know, so we can share your classroom projects and experiences with other teachers. Contact us at edu@wildlifecenter.org

Episode 111: Baby Season

Episode 11 of UNTAMED highlights the very busiest time of year for Wildlife Center staff, students, and volunteers -- baby season! Spring is a time for new life; many species of wild animals are giving birth or laying eggs and caring for young throughout much of the spring. It's also the time of year when people are more active; as the warm weather approaches, humans spend more time in their yards and gardens and in the great outdoors. This increased activity of both humans and wild animals can put us all in more direct contact with one another. There are a number of misinformation and misconceptions about young wild animals; learn from the Wildlife Center staff how to best help young animals stay in the wild with their parents. 

People Featured in This Episode
Help Baby Wildlife
  • If you see a young wild animal, it’s best to first ask questions before intervening. Despite our natural inclinations, the best chance of survival for a young uninjured animal is often to leave it in its parents' care. Use these infographics to determine when and how to best help common baby wildlife you may find in your own backyard, and visit this section of our website for more advice.  And remember, feeding wildlife can often cause more harm than good.

  • Need help for an injured or orphaned young wild animal in Virginia? Find a permitted wildlife rehabilitator near you.

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  • Help young wildlife by keeping your cat indoors. The 11-year study conducted by former veterinary director Dr. Dave McRuer vividly illustrates how much of an impact outdoor cats have on wildlife. The study examined nearly 21,000 patient records, including 11,144 small mammals and 9,777 small birds, admitted between 2000 and 2010. Of this total, 2,970 patients were confirmed cat-attack victims. Most patients admitted after interaction with a cat came in between April and September, with the majority of patients admitted in May and June.

  • What wild foods do wildlife eat? Check out Wild Foods 4 Wildlife!

  • What Good is Wildlife Rehabilitation?
For Classrooms

Looking for ideas on how to incorporate the stories and lessons of UNTAMED into the classroom? The Wildlife Center is happy to provide these original worksheets and activity pages for teachers and educators. Designed to highlight the major themes and ideas presented in each episode, these activities are best used in combination with a classroom viewing.

Are you using these materials and resources in your classroom? We are eager to hear from you! Please let us know, so we can share your classroom projects and experiences with other teachers. Contact us at edu@wildlifecenter.org

Episode 112: Waterbirds

Episode 12 of UNTAMED highlights the diverse group of wildlife known as waterbirds -- loons, herons, egrets, ducks, geese, grebes, pelicans, and more -- which makes up 30 families, and, collectively about 800 species. Waterbirds can be found in the mountains, rivers, marshes, and coastal plains; each adapted to their specific environment. Whether year-round residents or long-distance migrants, many waterbirds depend on critical wetland habitats. Learn more about these amazing avian wildlife and how we can change our behaviors to help their habitats and populations. 

"Nature is not a catalog. We don't get to pick and choose the things about which we care and simply ignore the rest." -- Ed Clark, Wildlife Center of Virginia
Waterbirds Featured in This Episode
People Featured in This Episode
Related Content
  • Plastic is a real issue for many waterbirds and other marine life — read Plastic Ocean by Charles Moore, one of our Wildlife Book Club books. And, check out what we're reading now and join us for the next online meeting!
  • Check out our Waterbirds playlist on YouTube!
Learn More
For Classrooms

Looking for ideas on how to incorporate the stories and lessons of UNTAMED into the classroom? The Wildlife Center is happy to provide these original worksheets and activity pages for teachers and educators. Designed to highlight the major themes and ideas presented in each episode, these activities are best used in combination with a classroom viewing.

Are you using these materials and resources in your classroom? We are eager to hear from you! Please let us know, so we can share your classroom projects and experiences with other teachers. Contact us at edu@wildlifecenter.org.

Episode 113: Hawks & Falcons

Episode 13 of UNTAMED focuses on diurnal birds of prey -- a diverse group of birds across the globe which includes hawks, falcons, osprey, eagles, and kites. While these different families of birds have a variety of physical and behavioral traits, they are all specially adapted for daytime hunting. Today, most of these birds of prey are widely appreciated by the public, but they still face many dangers. Learn more about these amazing raptors and how to help. 

"We can't stop being vigilant. We have to protect these species, and we have to be aware of what's happening." -- Ed Clark, Wildlife Center of Virginia
Hawks and Falcons Featured in This Episode
People Featured in This Episode
Related Content
  • Adopt one of our education diurnal birds of prey through our Caring for Critters program — and get to know Verlon, Ruby, Rosalie, Maggie, and Hudson better!
  • Support Maggie and the Wildlife Center by purchasing Maggie the One-Eyed Peregrine Falcon by author Christie Gove-Berg.
  • Learn more about the amazing and fierce conservationist, Rosalie Edge, by reading a past Wildlife Center book club book: Rosalie Edge, Hawk of Mercy: The Activist Who Saved Nature from the Conservationists by Dyana Furmansky. Check out what our next selection is and join us for our online meeting!
  • Want to be ready to help raptors? Check out our next Wildlife Care Academy class on capture and rescue! 
  • Learn more about creancing in this video on the Wildlife Center’s YouTube channel.
Learn More
For Classrooms

Looking for ideas on how to incorporate the stories and lessons of Untamed into the classroom? The Wildlife Center is happy to provide these original worksheets and activity pages for teachers and educators. Designed to highlight the major themes and ideas presented in each episode, these activities are best used in combination with a classroom viewing.

Are you using these materials and resources in your classroom? We are eager to hear from you! Please let us know, so we can share your classroom projects and experiences with other teachers. Contact us at edu@wildlifecenter.org.