What To Do With Wildlife This Spring
Spring has sprung! And as we start to see our familiar feathered friends returning, birds and other wildlife will begin breeding and rearing their young. During this time of year and through the summer months, you might come across a fallen bird's nest or maybe a bunny that looks injured or sick. If you come across any wildlife you think is in need of your help, please take a moment to access the situation.
More often than not, baby birds and mammals are "rescued" when help is not needed. These "kidnappings" can be avoided. If you find an unfeathered baby bird, look for a nest in nearby trees, bushes, or on the ground (possibly damaged.) A baby bird put back in nests WILL be cared for by its parents.
If there is no nest or parent birds seen, or if the baby looks sick or injured it needs to go to a wildlife rehabilitation center ASAP. Put the baby in a warm safe place (a shoe box or paper bag if needed) until you can transport the bird. Baby birds cannot self regulate heat so you will NEED to provide them with heat. A heating pad under half the container, or a hot water bottle wrapped in a towel in the box are usually sufficient for short times.
Many baby birds that are found hopping on the ground and are feathered are assumed to be orphaned and are unnecessarily taken. These little guys often don't need our help and should be left to go on their little feathered way without humans and pets interfering.
Many people come across the path of a baby bunny during the spring. Bunnies are similar in that they are often "rescued" when it is not needed. Bunnies wander out of the comforts of their nests quite young. If you find a baby bunny that has its eyes open he is probably fine. Bunny nests are often found and damaged easily. Mother rabbits WILL accept young returned to the nest even after human contact. If you find babies with eyes closed and can't find the nest gently pack them up, supplement heat, and take them to a wildlife rehabilitation center ASAP.
Please keep wildlife,their young, and their nests safe by restricting access from our pets. If you find any wildlife that is obviously injured, it is an emergency! Please contact a wildlife rehabilitation center immediately.
In St.Paul you can call the wildlife rehabilitation center at 651-486-9453. It is located on north Dale St. You can also call Wildlife Rehabilitation and Release located in the Animal Humane Society in Golden Valley at 763-522-4325. They provide great wildlife hotlines with pre-recorded answers to the most commonly asked questions.