- Posted April 28, 2014 by
ANIMALS ARE HERE TO TEACH US KINDNESS AND COMPASSION (Part I)
Only an hour drive from Los Angeles, tucked high up in the hills of the Angeles National Forest, on Little Tujunga Canyon Road, there is a very special, magical place called the Wildlife Waystation.
Established in 1965 by an extraordinary woman, Martine Colette, a wildlife lover and expert, the Wildlife Waystation is the first exotic animal sanctuary in the United States. A dear friend told me about the sanctuary and their struggles to survive, and to raise funds for a Conditional Use Permit from the county. The permit will allow the animal ranch once again to be open for visitors that will help cover the everyday costs. I, like many of you, love animals and I do believe that together we can prevent the permanent closing of the Wildlife Waystation and save many animal lives and jobs. The purpose of this article is to inspire you TO DO something and to help those who can’t speak for themselves. Please, forward this information to your friends and loved ones, together we can create a miracle!
I am very grateful that I was able to visit the sanctuary and meet some of the animals and people working there. The healing energy opened my heart widely; a few times I had tears in my eyes. After my tour in the wild I was changed. Being so close to these animals, experiencing their grace (although some of them were abused or neglected before they came to the sanctuary), made me appreciate even more the good and caring, loving people. It was a true honor to meet and talk to Martine Colette, the woman whose love and dedication has saved over 76,000 animals since she founded the sanctuary fifty years ago. These animals came from all over the world and from many different situations. Some have been former circus performers, members of animal exhibits, orphaned or abandoned by their parents or came from research labs. Many of the animals were adopted by owners who thought that they would make “cute” pets until they grew up and became unmanageable. Sadly, in several such cases the animals were de-clawed or even de-fanged in a cruel attempt to maintain control over the animal.
During my private tour, guided by Martine’s amazing executive assistant Alyson Rousseau, I fell in love with Mungar, the tiger. As a baby, Mungar was used in photo shoots, whereby anyone with $20 can get a picture taken. “We don’t know what misfortune happened to him – Martine told me – but we do know when he arrived at Wildlife Waystation, he was malnourished, had malocclusion, slight deformity in his front legs, totally blind in one eye, visually impaired in the other and had an eating disorder.”
Despite of all the challenges, Mungar is one of the sweetest animals I’ve ever seen, quiet and relaxed, he sleeps most of the day, like many cats. When I looked into his eyes it was soul to soul telepathic communication, very powerful experience that will stay with me the rest of my life. Montana, the tiger, talked his little heart out to me, it was adorable to see this giant tiger purr like a kitty. Later Martine, the owner of the sanctuary told me that he may not last the year, because he had a seizure last night. “It’s sad that they have to get old.” – Martine said with a sigh; she is not so protective of herself as she is of her beloved animals.
The smiling monkey Cebus stole my heart too. Long ago she learned to smile and play with her eye brows exactly as humans do; she is like a clown and makes everybody laugh. Cebus is 46 and she is one of the most playful and happy wild animals here.
Currently 450 animals live on 160 acres at Wildlife Waystation. These include large cats such as lions, tigers, bobcats, leopards, mountain lions, even ligresses (genetically created animal, father is a lion and mother a tiger), bears, opossums, foxes, wolves, llamas, reptiles, many types of birds of pray. The Wildlife Waystation also has the largest chimpanzee colony in the Western U.S with 50 chimpanzees living permanently here.
Throughout the Wildlife Waystation’s growth and development, educating the public about wildlife has been a priority. The overall goal is to preserve wildlife and to cease its abuse and mistreatment. Some of the animals residing at Wildlife Waystation are habituated to be “educational animals”, to promote animal and man co-existing and learning from each other. Through community programs young and old alike and taught to treat animals with caution and respect. The education provided by Wildlife Waystation is aimed at teaching the public how to help prevent endangerment and extinction.
Wildlife Waystation is a 501 (c) 3, sanctuary dedicated to the rescue, rehabilitation, relocation and problem solving of native, wild, and exotic animals. “It’s very difficult.” – Martine, the founder and owner of the Wildlife Waystation told me – “If we can get ourselves re-opened then our opportunity to help ourselves its greatly increased. People can come, there is a revenue from that, there is merchandise, and there are many opportunities. We are not like a zoo, you can’t pay $14.95 and walk through. It’s a very special place, you are very close to the animals so we do things differently, it’s a much nicer experience. You are walked through by a wonderful tour guide who works closely with the animals, you can ask questions, a personal professional touch.”
One of the most unique residents of the Wildlife sanctuary are the chimps. Twenty years ago Martine saved them after a bio laboratory on the East coast closed down. What the chimps went through and what they are today is really amazing. “Shauri (ShaSha) is my hairy daughter, a chimpanzee daughter.” Martine told me and showed me a letter ShaSha wrote to her. “This is my child. She is adorable. She has the intelligence of a 7 year old child, doesn’t look like an animal. She is wonderful! Her given name is Shauri Ya Mangu which in Suahili means God’s gift, but her every day name is ShaSha and she recognizes both names, she also understands chimp, English and Spanish. She is trilingual.”
Martine and her assistant Alyson showed me pictures of ShaSha now and I was amazed. There are a few huge bright orbs on some pictures, the archangels showing up on pictures as orbs. I looked at ShaSha’s body language, there is a big blue orb in front of her heart, she is talking to Martine, daughter to mother… The green orb is Archangel Raphael, the Healing Angel, ShaSha is healing Martine, releasing the negative energy from her because she feels that mommy is stressed out. You even can see a wing of the angel, wow… A lot of angels are surrounding and healing, ShaSha and Martine. Right in front of ShaSha’s heart there is another orb, blue color (Archangel Raguel, the Archangel of communications), the loving daughter is opening her heart to communicate, a trustful heart to heart communication, between best friends. The energy comes from the Angels, goes through ShaSha’s heart and she channels it to Martine. Looking at these pictures warms up your heart, it shows that there is nothing more powerful than love.
“Yes, I love her and all of the animals very much! – Martine agrees – ShaSha is my child. This is my baby… We are very connected. We always have been connected and we always will be connected.” Martine has raised ShaSha since she was 56 hours old. Her mother didn’t want to look after her. This is one of the biomedical chimps and she was born here at the Wildlife Waystation. Nobody knew the mother was pregnant, nobody knew anything and one morning the keepers came to take care of the chimps and they saw this little tiny baby. ShaSha was 2 3/4p, clang to her mother’s leg and the mother didn’t let her come to the breast to feed. Martine wanted her mother to raise her and they watched 24/7, hoping that the little baby chimp would be raised naturally by her mother.
(Continued in next article)
By Nelly Angel Coneway