KHSL – A sanctuary for animals with special needs in Butte County is back open.
The coronavirus pandemic shut down the Barry R. Kirshner Wildlife Sanctuary in Butte Valley two and a half months ago. The closure has had a big financial impact on the non-profit.
"We have 102 animals. If you consider the noisy macaws that get donated to us," said Angie Bracco, Educational Director for the Barry R. Kirshner Wildlife Sanctuary.
Since the coronavirus pandemic - the site hasn't seen much company, and that's not good for their bottom line.
"Financially it has hurt us tremendously," said Bracco. The business said they lost about 80% of their donors.
"That money goes for their feed and their other needs also,” Owner of the Kirshner Wildlife Sanctuary, Roberta Kirshner said. “We’re always looking for volunteers. We’ve lost a lot of our good volunteers."
Because of disabilities, these animals can't be released to the wild right now.
"They also are here to educate the public as to why they're here,” Bracco said. “And what are the things humans can do to keep them in the wild."
Volunteers are hoping to bounce back from this economic hit by reopening their gates.
To accommodate with social distancing guidelines, employees at the 19-acre property are asking everyone to bring their own face mask. Currently, they're only allowing at least 40 people inside the property at a time. and it's not just people protection.
"If you look at where our enclosures are. They are distanced far enough apart where people can keep their distance." distance to keep both humans and animals safe.
The Barry R. Kirshner Wildlife Sanctuary is located at 4995 Pentz Road. It's open every day except on Mondays.