Welcome to Ewildagain’s Video Resources

Click on one of the topics listed below for a summary of each video contained on the website. Then click on one of the blue buttons at left to view all of the videos for a given topic.







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Review of Milk Replacers for Wild Mammal Orphans
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Part 1 – Overall Importance of Good Nutrition (3:37) This section provides a brief review of the reasons that good nutrition is so vitally important to the animal’s health. Includes information for people who want to know what to feed a wild orphan mammal they rescued.

Part 2 – Differences of Various Species Milk (7:49) This section briefly describes milk compositions of several species of wild mammals commonly rehabilitated in North America and compares those with cow, goat, cat, and dog milks.

Part 3 – Differences of Various Milk Replacer Products (16:23) This section briefly describes some of basic criteria used to differentiate milk powders, such as composition, ingredients, energy (kcals), texture, stability, and solubility.

Part 4 – Examples of Comparisons on Commonly Used Milk Replacer Products (9:32) This section provides a brief example of how rehabilitators compare several milk replacers used in North America with wild mammals. The comparisons consider types of animals the milk powders are designed to feed (wildlife, dogs, cats), composition, ingredients (i.e., fats, minerals), texture, and more.

Part 5 – Milk Replacer Formula Recipe Considerations (8:30) In addition to considering which milk replacer product to use, rehabilitators must determine if a formula recipe meets the needs of the wild mammal orphans in their care. This section describes some of the considerations in determining if a recipe meets the nutritional needs and a tool to make calculating the nutrition easier.

Part 6 – More on Milk Replacer Formula Recipe Considerations (11:07) This section describes a few additional considerations when considering the development and use of formula recipes, including the importance of mixing the powder with water, source of fats, and more.

Part 7 – Evaluating Formula Performance and Results (4:55) This section provides brief examples of how rehabilitators evaluate the performance and results of using a milk replacer product by considering the health of the animal. It mentions factors such as general health, gastrointestinal processes, and growth.

Part 8 – Troubleshooting – Potential Causes of Difficulties (6:28) There are times that young wild mammals develop health problems that a rehabilitator suspects may be related to the milk replacer formula. This section briefly reviews several factors related to milk powders that could cause difficulties, as well as other causes, such as overfeeding and parasites. More on troubleshooting is available at www.ewildagain.org.

Part 9 – What Products and Recipes to Use? (4:30) Rehabilitators consider many factors in deciding which milk replacers and recipes to use, including consistent positive results, and then make their own decisions. Changes in milk replacer products, increasing knowledge about wildlife and nutrition, and methods to evaluate product performance are prompting rehabilitators to reassess the formulas used. New research on product changes and recipe effectiveness will be posted in the Updates on www.ewildagain.org.

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WildAgain’s Data and Research on Milk Replacers
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Part 1 – Roadmap to the Data on Ewildagain (9:51) This short video is designed to orient you to this section of Ewildagain.org that contains WildAgain’s data and research on commercial milk replacers that are used with wild mammals in rehabilitation. The subsequent videos, listed above, present more in-depth information on each of the specific topics discussed in this video. We recommend viewing this video first to help you navigate the site and more quickly find the desired information.

Part 2 – Wet Matter versus Dry Matter Basis Explained (7:33) Wet matter and dry matter basis are often used to describe milk replacers. Not understanding these terms could result in inappropriate comparisons of the compositions of various products, like comparing apples to onions. This video briefly explains the difference between these terms.

Part 3 – Dry Matter Basis (Unrehydrated Powder) (7:24) This video explains the various products on a dry matter basis. All of the products tested at Midwest Labs are analyzed on a dry basis and are listed by product and lot number with the accompanying values. This page can be used to quickly assess if the component analysis on a dry matter basis is changing over time as different lots are manufactured and to what degree. Additionally, this page can be used to easily compare the dry matter values between various milk replacer products.

Part 4 – Wet Matter Basis when Rehydrated with Water (2:53) This video further explains the various products on a wet matter basis. All of the products tested at Midwest Labs are listed by product and lot number with the accompanying values when rehydrated with water at a 1:2 ratio. This page can be used to quickly assess if the component analysis on a wet matter basis is changing over time as different lots are manufactured and to what degree. Additionally, this page can be used to easily compare the wet matter values between various milk replacer products. These values can be compared to the research studies of the various species’ milk compositions.

Part 5 – Calculating Kcals (4:10) This video explains the two primary systems used to calculate energy values or calorie content in various food products. Both of the Atwater (human foods) and the Modified Atwater (AAFCO) systems are explained along with an example using the values from a specific lot of a commonly used milk replacer powder.

Part 6 – Product Ingredients (3:20) This video discusses the page on the website that shows all of the ingredients as listed on the packaging for the various milk replacer products. It highlights the primary ingredients (in order of prominence) as well as the secondary ingredients of the macro and micro minerals and vitamins that have been added, as well as any preservatives. This page in the website provides a quick way to compare the ingredients between the various products.

Part 7 – Macro and Micro Minerals (8:09) Rehabilitators often focus on the calcium and phosphorus content in a milk replacer since they know that an adequate ratio of those two minerals is essential for health and growth. Other macro and micro minerals that are critical for an animal’s health and development are often overlooked. This video discusses the challenges facing rehabilitators as there is very little research information on the minimum/maximum daily requirements of these minerals for many of the wild mammal species often found in rehabilitation.

Part 8 – Weight, Texture and Measurement Considerations (7:30) This session discusses some of the observed differences in weight, color and texture between the various milk replacer products. While some of the differences are minor, other differences, such as the texture of the product, can affect the accuracy of measurements when preparing formula. Suggestions on which products are more prone to this and ways to reduce possible measurement error are presented in this short video.

Part 9 – Product Solubility (9:23) Many rehabilitators have prepared formula using powdered milk replacers assuming they were an “instant-mix” product that rehydrated very quickly when mixed with warm water. WildAgain’s solubility testing, discussed in this video, shows that the more commonly used products perform successfully as an instant mix. The encouraging news is that the powder rehydrates and dissolves more fully by making some fairly simple changes, such as allowing the formula to ‘rest’ longer before feeding it and mixing with warmer water.

Part 10 – Product Stability (5:19) Food products with high fat and oil contents have high susceptibility to rancidity, either through exposure to heat or air or both. Powdered milk replacers are no exception. This video discusses some of these product stability issues, how to detect them, steps to take to prevent rancidity, and what to do if a product appears to be spoiled.

Part 11 – Individual Test Results for Each Product (4:48) The website contains a page recapping the entire suite of test results for each product/lot that has been tested. This video briefly describes a sample page to indicate where test results for any product can be easily located and reviewed.

Part 12 – Recent Updates and Other Related Resources (2:34) The last video in this series indicates where links to recent updates and other related resources are located. This provides an easy tool to alert the regular visitor to the website what has changed and what has been recently added.

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WildAgain’s Nutrition Calculator
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Part 1 – Overview of WildAgain’s Nutrition Calculator (9:01) This video provides a brief overview of the various components that comprise the calculator. Built on an Excel spreadsheet platform, it easily downloads to either a PC or a Mac. The workbook contains the calculator itself, providing the compositional analysis (proteins, fats, carbs, kcals) of any formula. There are also options to input individual products that are not preloaded into the calculator. The calculator also compares the formula composition to a selected number of studies that have analyzed mother’s milk for various species, and provides the option to input other studies as well.

Part 2 – Inputting Data into the Nutrition Calculator by Volume or Parts (6:57) This video demonstrates how to use the calculator by inputting data by volume, such as tablespoons, or as “parts,” such as equal parts of a given product and water. A drop-down menu is demonstrated that shows the 50+ products already preloaded into the calculator. The video shows how to do this with a very simple formula recipe (using only 1 product mixed with water) as well as a more complex recipe (using multiple milk replacer powders mixed with both heavy whipping cream and water).

Part 3 – Inputting Data into the Nutrition Calculator by Weight (grams) (3:25) This video demonstrates how to use the calculator by inputting all of the data by weight in grams. The video shows how to do this using the same formula recipe discussed in the prior video, Part 2, which was input by volume (parts).

Part 4 – Comparing the Composition of a Formula to Mother’s Milk (8:30) This video demonstrates that portion of the calculator where the formula can be compared to the composition of the mother’s milk based on several pre-loaded species-specific research studies.

Part 5 – Custom Input for Products and Species Milk Research Studies (10:58) This video demonstrates how to input individualized milk replacer products and species-specific research studies that are not already pre-loaded into the calculator. It also demonstrates the functionality of inputting custom values for cream, as well as custom values for the weights of any products. Both dry and wet products can be added to the calculator.

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Overview of Rehab Caging and Facility Basics
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Part 1 – Introduction to Wildlife Rehabilitation Caging (7:38) These videos offer a brief overview of wildlife rehabilitation caging. This first video describes the importance of effective caging for wildlife in rehabilitation. It also explains that such cages are required by government agencies that grant wildlife rehabilitation permits. Key resources for caging decisions are described, such as guidelines in the Minimum Standards of Wildlife Rehabilitation and experienced wildlife rehabilitators.

Part 2 – Cage Variety (6:03) This video explains that rehabilitators need a variety of cages to meet the needs of the animals in rehabilitation, as well as to meet general functionality and regulatory requirements.

Part 3 – Cage Considerations (9:46) This session describes important factors that are considered in selecting, building, and using cages for wildlife in rehabilitation. It includes factors such as natural history, safety, and size.

Part 4 – More Cage Considerations (14:22) This session continues the discussion of important factors that are considered in selecting, building, and using cages for wildlife in rehabilitation. It includes factors such as shelter, natural furnishing, lighting, stress reduction, cleaning, and more.

Part 5 – Cage Sources (10:00) This video describes some of the sources from which rehabilitators obtain cages, including purchase, donations, and building. It mentions considerations used to assess whether and how commercial and donated cages meet the needs of wildlife and the rehabilitator.

Part 6 – Rehab Facilities and Wrap-up (4:32) This session describes some brief considerations for rehabilitation facilities, such as having designated areas for admission and quarantine. Rehabilitators are encouraged to continue learning and collaborating to improve rehabilitation caging and facilities.

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WildAgain’s Small Squirrel Cage Plan
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Part 1 – Tools & Materials (11:07) This first video discusses the tools and materials require to construct the small wire cage described in the downloadable set of plans on WildAgain’s website (download the pdf file here). This type of cage may be used with small litters of larger tree species (Fox, Eastern and Western gray) that have had their eyes open for about 1-2 weeks, or for an injured adult squirrel needing to be confined in a small cage. The cage is very economical at around $20 in materials and only takes about an hour or so to construct. The next three videos walk through the detailed steps required to cut and prep the welded wire; how to use J-clips; assembly and final set-up.

Part 2 – Wire Cutting & Preparation (9:08) This video demonstrates how to use the cage plan to measure and cut the welded wire to produce the cage pieces that will be assembled in the next video. It discusses the all-important step of preparing the cut wire by filing or grinding off all sharp points and edges produced during the cutting process. This is critical to prevent cuts and lacerations to the animals in rehabilitation as well as the rehabilitator.

Part 3 – Cage Assembly (8:19) This video discusses the assembly process. This requires bending some of the wire pieces into proper shape. The video also discusses the use of J-clips as the primary fastening material to hold the wire cage pieces together as well as using them as hinges for the two doors on the cage.

Part 4 – Final Steps (8:32) This video discusses the last assembly step of preparing and attaching the small feeding door. It concludes by demonstrating how to set the cage up for occupancy by young juvenile squirrels, incorporating the use of flooring material, a nest box, small tree branches for climbing and gnawing, placement of the water bottle and secure locking mechanisms to prevent accidental escapes.

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