If you find a bird or other wild animal that has been rejected or injured, you can call on a wildlife rehabilitator. They will work with veterinarian professionals to diagnose and treat injuries and illnesses in wild animals. They treat and care for wild animals until they are fully recovered. In most cases, wild animals should be left alone. If you do determine the animal requires intervention, you can locate a wildlife rehabilitator through the wildlife rehabilitation information directory to assess the situation with a professional, rather than trying to fix the problem yourself. Keep reading for more information and how to access the directory.
Before You Contact the Wildlife Rehabilitator:
Determine if the animal really needs saving.
It is common to see baby animals outside, especially during spring. They may look like they need our help, but unless they have really been orphaned or are genuinely injured, they do not need our intervention.
What to Do with Injured Wildlife
One of the most common ways that young wildlife becomes orphaned is through well-meaning humans. Monitor young wildlife before you try rescuing or saving it because there is a very good chance that the parents are simply out foraging for food.
Ideally, if you have determined that the wildlife needs help, you should leave it where it is and contact a rehabilitator, although you should not leave the animal if it is in danger. Moving a young animal can cause it injury or damage, and if you speak to a rehabilitator, they will be able to tell you the safest way to move them, as well as what food and drink they need, what conditions they need to be kept in, and more.
Wildlife Rehabilitation Centers Near Me
If you have monitored the rabbit or other young wildlife and have determined that it needs help, you can find professionals to help by using a wildlife rehabilitation information directory. These list rehabilitators, usually by state and location, and provide a phone number so that you can call and determine what your next move should be. The rehabilitator will ask you questions about the animal you have seen to try and determine whether it needs help. They will ask whether you have intervened and what action you have taken. Some parents will abandon their babies if they can smell humans on them, which means that picking up a seemingly injured rabbit kit could cause its Mum to leave it behind.
The Wildlife Rehabilitation Information Directory
The most comprehensive directory is managed and maintained by the National Wildlife Rehabilitators Association or NWRA. Their website gives details of local rehabilitators and centers, and they also have a central office that you can contact to get the right name and number.
Find a Bird Rehabilitation Center Near Me
Similar rules apply when considering rescuing a baby bird. Keep an eye on the young to determine whether their mum is out collecting food. Keep dogs and cats away, and only move the bird if necessary.
If you do need to move a bird, try to put it back in its own nest. For the most part, it is a myth that parents will abandon babies if they have been handled by humans. They do not have such a keen sense of smell to be able to tell if you have picked up their baby.
A lot of birds learn to fly from the ground up, which means that you may see them hopping around on the ground and their parents will be feeding at least every hour, often a few times an hour.
Use the wildlife rehabilitation information directory to find wildlife rescue near you, and they will advise of your best course of action.
Featured Image Credit: robbihoy, Pixabay