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Thursday, July 31, 2014

Woman takes in three tiny raccoons

Pretty Prairie resident Abbie Wisdom-Williams is caring for the raccoons, left homeless by the tornado.

BY AMANDA O'TOOLE
The Wichita Eagle

Twister the raccoon thinks Abbie Wisdom-Williams is his mother.

She has been caring for him since workers with the state's Department of Wildlife and Parks brought him from Greensburg to Pretty Prairie, where Wisdom-Williams lives.

When he arrived May 9, he was only 4 or 5 weeks old and was walking crooked.

"This one, I think, got banged around quite a bit," she said. He may have been roosting in a tree or a chimney, she said, when the tornado hit the town May 4.

But after a few days in her care and sleeping in her bed, Twister is walking straight again and getting used to the spoiled life.

Wisdom-Williams has been a volunteer licensed wildlife rehabilitator since 1999. She helps injured animals return to their natural environment. She's raised possums and coyotes and other wild animals.

She cares for as many as 20 raccoons a year.

On Monday night, she became the caretaker of two other raccoons from Greensburg.

She named them Dorothy and Toto on Tuesday.

"They're awfully thin. They were traumatized," she said.

The three carnivores went with Wisdom-Williams to work Tuesday so she could feed them every three hours.

"They're just like a baby," she said, Twister purring in the background.

The three raccoons will be released in the Cheney area, she said, in about six months.

Anyone who finds a wild animal in need of help should call Wisdom-Williams at 316-734-7873 or the Great Plains Nature Center at 316-683-5499.

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