Nature’s Nursery seeking help with naming Education Ambassador groundhog
TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - Nature’s Nursery is using Groundhog Day this year to educate northwest Ohioans about groundhogs while also seeking help from the public to help choose a name for a special groundhog at their facility.
Nature’s Nursery has over 25 Education Ambassador animals at their facility in Whitehouse that are utilized year-round for educational programs all over the region. On Feb. 2, instead of searching her her shadow, one special Education Ambassador will be searching for a name.
According to Nature’s Nursery, their Education Groundhog was found as a baby at the beginning of 2022 and was raised by the finder on an inappropriate diet. She was later turned over to rehabilitators, but Nature’s Nursery says it was too late.
She had imprinted on humans and lost her necessary wild instincts. Taken on as an Education Ambassador with Nature’s Nursery, she will spend her years teaching people about wildlife, but first she needs a name.
“We only name our Education Ambassadors, never the rehab animals that will be released,” said Allison Aey, Nature’s Nursery Executive Director. “It’s important for the rehab animals to remain wild and giving them a name feels counterproductive to that. However, naming the Education Ambassadors really helps people, especially kids, to find a connection with the animal that encourages empathy, understanding and learning.”
According to Nature’s Nursery, wild groundhogs in the region are in a deep hibernation right now, but due to her circumstance, the Nature’s Nursery groundhog is indoors and therefore in “torpor” which is a light hibernation with a slower pace while awake and long periods of rest.
Nature’s Nursery says the staff has narrowed the naming options down to five choices they feel best fits the groundhog’s personality, and now the community is needed to help make the final choice.
The naming options are:
From now through Groundhog Day, people can make a $10 donation to vote for their favorite name from the list of choices. One entry will be drawn to win a Nature’s Nursery prize pack and the voted name will become the groundhog’s new name.
“We love having our supporters help name the animals and all of the funds raised will be used to help provide care for her,” said Aey. “We will also be doing live videos on Groundhogs Day and fun facts via social media to teach people that these animals do so much more than just provide the mythical predictions of Spring each year.”
To find the name voting opportunity, click here.
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