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Tree Trimming Can Put Bay Area's Baby Animals In Peril, Wildlife Advocates Warn

SAN RAFAEL (KPIX 5) -- While spring is the time of year when many property owners around the Bay Area begin tree trimming, wildlife advocates want them to take caution because it's also nesting season for animals that are fast becoming orphaned.

Alison Hermance, the communications manager at WildCare in San Rafael, nursed a baby Eastern gray squirrel who almost didn't survive his first month of life.

High up on a tree, his nest was cut down down by tree trimmers.

"He still has a bloody nose and broke off his top two teeth," she told KPIX 5. "This is happening throughout the Bay Area."

But Hermance said it's not just squirrels.

"So hawks, owls, squirrels, raccoons, skunks: everybody is having babies right now," she said while pointing out more orphaned baby squirrels that were being brought in for care.

"We typically treat about two hundred a year," she said.

While many tree companies are on high alert for wildlife, James Cairnes, co-owner of The Small World Tree Service in Marin County, said that some customers are not as sensitive to the creatures' plight and just want the trees cut down.

"Yeah, a lot of people will do that and it's our job to try and educate them or we'll just say, 'Look, we're not doing it,'" he said.

But most people, like the owner of the house Cairnes is currently working for, value protecting wildlife and often delay pruning until late summer.

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