Tips on Helping Baby Wildlife

Baby raccoon

You’re going for a walk in the woods and you come across a nest of baby birds or baby squirrels that fell out of a tree. Or maybe you find that a fox or coyote has killed a rabbit and you discover her nest of orphaned babies. Spring is a common time to find baby wildlife in need of assistance. How do you know what to do when you come across baby animals that look like they might need rescuing?

Baby rabbit

Here are a few common sense tips from Project Wildlife, part of the San Diego Humane Society:

  • Don’t try to force a baby bird or mammal to eat or drink water. The little guy may be too stressed for its delicate digestive system to properly process it.
  • If you take in injured or abandoned wildlife (baby or adult), be sure to place the animal in a warm, dark, and quiet place until it can be taken to a wildlife rescue center.

Baby bird

  • It may be appealing, but you should never attempt to raise orphaned baby wildlife on your own as a pet. Even experienced dog and cat owners do not have the knowledge to properly care for wild animals.
  • Be careful when doing yardwork like clearing brush or mowing grass…you may disturb an animal’s nest. Put off tree trimming during bird nesting season to keep nestlings safe.

Baby squirrel

  • Don’t be in too much of a rush to rescue baby animals you assume are orphaned. Keep an eye on the babies from a safe distance for a while before taking action. Often the mother may be nearby, waiting for you to leave the area before she goes over to them.

To learn more about helping baby wildlife this spring, check out Project Wildlife’s website for great tips and information!


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