Wildlife Emergency Information - Ravensbeard Wildlife Center
Wildlife Rehabilitators    

Wildlife BABIES

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are just ordinary people trying to help. At this time there is no centralized number to call to reach us. We recommend that you leave a message and a telephone number where we can reach you. If your emergency is resolved it is always helpful if you call back and let us know.

It is against the law to try to rehabilitate wildlife in New York State without a license. It is a Federal offense to try to rehabilitate a bird. Rehabilitators work very hard at training to handle these emergencies. Please let us help you!


   In the mean time…

If you have the animal in your care already:

  • Please put the animal/bird into a cardboard box. You may put an old t-shirt or towel in the bottom. Be sure that there are no ravels or threads on it to tangle in the animal's feet.

  • Keep the animal warm and quiet. Put the box with the animal in a safe place where pets and people will not disturb it.

  • Do not give water or food. Please talk to a rehabilitator FIRST.    

    Please DO: CONTACT A REHABILITATOR. Every year several animals die because of inexperienced care. If you want to learn about caring for wildlife, we will be happy to teach and mentor you, but for the emergency it is best to contact a professional. There is much information on the web that is incomplete or incorrect. Much heartache can be spared by your determination to contact a rehabber.

    Wildlife babies are often left alone by their mothers. This is especially true of deer and rabbits. Do not disturb any wildlife baby unless it is in imminent & true danger.

    If it is a bird out in the wild:

    Is this an emergency?
    Is the bird injured?
    Is it a young fledgling bird:
          Feathered but not flying well
          Leave it alone, protect from predators,
          bring cats & dogs inside.

    The nest fell out of a tree, was cut down with tree, nest was in tree cavity, etc:

  • Put nest and babies back in tree.

  • Put nest into container that is water-proof, with drainage into outdoor location near original nest site. The nest must be in shaded spot and out of the reach of rainstorms.

  • Make nest to put in container. Do NOT use grasses, which tend to be cold & wet. Use dry conifer needles, crushed paper towel, shredded paper. Be careful that the material is not of the sort that could get tangled around a bird's legs.


If birds have a nest in the cavity of a tree to be cut down: cut that section of tree separately.
      You can then attach it to another nearby tree with ropes and nails, etc. If this is done right away the parents will find their young. You, of course, have to stay away!!!

If it is a large bird,
hawk, owl, heron, goose, swan, etc

If the bird is injured and you want to catch it, you will need a large towel or blanket, a net (opt) and a friend with another towel. You drop or wrap the towel around the bird's wings with your arms so that you have control of the bird's wings.

If it is a heron or crane you MUST GAIN CONTROL OF THE BEAK IMMEDIATELY!


    A towel over the eyes of a bird will quiet it down. Immediately put bird into appropriately sized box or dog carrier, cover with towel.Keep injured birds in a warm, quiet place until placed with rehabber.

*Do NOT give food or water.
  Never give water to a bird.

    If it is a mammal or reptile that is injured and
    needs treatment:

  • Catch the animal if it is safe. Call a rehabber for advice.

  • Keep the animal in a warm, dry box or cat/dog carrier until you reach a rehabber.

  • Do not give food or water without instructions.
    This is very important.


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Bird Babies:

 Yes, you may touch a bird baby if it has fallen out of the nest. You can put it back into the nest, or if that is impossible, or if the entire nest has come down, put the baby bird or nest into a basket or box with drainage and wedge it or hang it from a nearby spot. The nest should be out of the sun and away from human hands and interference. The mama will find her babies and feed them.




Fawns & Cottontail rabbits  (aka "bunnies")

 Their mamas leave them alone for the whole day.
Their protection is that they have no scent. The
mamas return in the evening and feed them.

      Please do not touch!



Fledgling Birds:

    Fledgling Birds have their new feathers
and are learning to fly.
Sometimes they get out of the nest and you will see them flitting about on the ground. If this happens please bring the pets inside to provide some protection while the mama and the papa corral their exhuberant youth into a safe spot.



Squirrel Babies:

    sometimes fall out of the tree. They can be alone, or sometimes the nest is knocked out by a storm. You can
put these babies in a box or a basket with a fleece blanket near the tree where they came down, and watch. It may take the whole day, but you will see the mama taking her babies to a new nest. The mamas have several nests prepared for just such an emergency. The same is true of other small mammals.


                   Mama Turtles

     are crossing the road in the spring to lay their eggs. You may help them across the road in the direction that they are going. Be careful of the large snapping turtles. They have a rough shell with jagged edges and a long pointy tail. Never pick up a trutle by its tail. Use a shovel, box or bag to gently encourage them across the road.Caution, snappers have looonnng necks.
Please wash your hands after touching any wildlife. 


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Ravensbeard Wildlife Center
75 Turkey Point
Saugerties, NY 12477

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