Melissa is an animal lover with a long history of caring for and sharing her animals with others. As well as providing a foster home for exotic birds, she is currently a volunteer with Phoenix Landing as their eastern panhandle of WV Home Visit Coordinator.
As a child, Melissa would frequently bring home stray dogs and cats or injured wildlife, always hoping to find their homes or rehabilitate them. Growing up, Melissa lived in a family with pet dogs, cats, mice, parakeets, anoles, hermit crabs, chickens, and even a pigeon she cared for that had fallen, flightless, out of its nest under a train bridge.
Melissa studied Spanish at the University of Maryland and can do the presentations in English, Spanish, or both. Melissa estudió español en la Universidad de Maryland y puede hacer las presentaciones en inglés, español, o los dos.
While working on her graduate degree, Melissa had a pet sitting and dog walking business, taking care of dogs, fish, cats, and even an iguana. She has also served as a volunteer for the Montgomery County Humane Society and the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria, VA.
A few years ago, Melissa had the honor of rehabilitating a 5' black rat snake that had emerged from hibernation early with a bad wound and infection. After two months of antibiotics and Silver Sulfadiazine cream, the black rat snake was happily released back where she had found him - under their deck. You can read more about him here.
Melissa is always continuing her research on and observations of animals and their habitats, behaviors, ecosystems, and diversity. She has taught children Spanish and about her animals at various preschools, camps, parties, libraries, and other classes.
Here is Melissa below, at the Shepherdstown University Nursery School with Zeelow once he'd grown a bit.