We attended the Premier last night of "Back to the Wild". It is a documentary about CROW filmed and written by David E. Carter. Last summer, David approached Dr. PJ and said that he wanted to make a documentary about CROW. And so he did!
A picture of David E. Kelly taken from his website for Sanibel Films.
The documentary was 56 minutes long and was wonderful. David had filmed about 37 hours which he condensed down to what we saw last night. It started out with a release and then a VERY dramatic rescue of a Fish Crow which involved CAT Turner, one of our rehabbers, climbing a tree. The film also followed several patients from their admittance to their release. And of course, it did show a few of the patients who didn't make it--which is part of daily life at CROW--something you never get used to but learn to accept and move on. The documentary was narrated by Nick Clooney--whose son, George, is pretty popular also.
As a surprise to everyone, Dr. PJ and David dedicated the film to Shirley Walter, the founder of CROW. She was as surprised as everyone. There was a Q and A afterwards and Shirley did talk a bit about how she started CROW. She found a Royal Tern on the causeway, picked it up, and took it to the preserve headquarters which was at the lighthouse at the time. They wouldn't take the bird and neither would anyone else. So, she took it home and with no experience at all, nursed it back to health. This led to other birds and animals which she treated--all at her own expense. Finally she incorporated as Care and Rehabilitation of Wildlife so that people could donate money to help her out. And it grew from there. It is pretty amazing that this hospital, now called Clinic for the Rehabilitation of Wildlife, grew from such a humble beginning.
The DVD will be available in a couple of weeks at the CROW giftshop. You may be able to order it online through the CROW website in the future. I have no idea how much it will cost. They did have a few very special copies there last night for $100. These had interviews with PJ and Shirley which the regular one will not have. I'm guessing that the DVD will be somewhere in the $20-$25 neighborhood--but that is just a guess. Also, keep an eye out for it on PBS. They are working on getting it on there also.
It was a very festive evening and an important one for CROW. In the past, the Martha Stewart crew came to CROW to film for one day. CROW has also been featured on Animal Planet but this is probably by far the most important (in my humble opinion) film done about CROW.