Emu eggs used to fetch $100 apiece. Now, they’re worthless. After people started
releasing the ostrich-like birds, Carol Miller adopted four at her wildlife rescue.
The emus joined a menagerie of other abandoned, injured and abused animals at
Miller’s home in El Paso’s Upper Valley. People bring her baby rabbits, squirrels,
ducks, geese, songbirds and even snakes. “I’m a central drop-off for what they find,”
Miller is a licensed wildlife rehabilitator who specializes in migrating birds. She also
helps the birds and other animals at Keystone Heritage Park, one of the last
remaining wetlands along the Rio Grande. Every evening she or a volunteer heads to
the preserve to scatter day-old bread and other scraps.
Along with neighbors, Miller has fought efforts by developers and the city of El Paso
to build apartment complexes, factories, a bus station, parking lots and a dump near
the park, which is about a quarter-mile from her house. “We still have to fight to
save it as a park,” she said.
Animals are the focus of Miller’s life. They consume her time from dawn to dark, she
Before retiring, Miller taught English at the University of Texas at El Paso. She
earned a doctorate in professional communications at New Mexico State University
so people would understand what she said rather than thinking she’s “some crazy
person off the street.”