Wildlife Rehabilitator Career Information : Wildlife Rehabilitator Job Description

A wildlife rehabilitator is someone who is
involved in the process of taking injured and orphaned wildlife and either raising them,
in the case of the orphans, or rehabilitating them as in working with them if they’re ill
or injured. The process is to get them back into the wild so they can lead the life that
they are supposed to lead. It’s all about the animals remaining wild and returning to
the wild. First and foremost, your main responsibility is to the animals that you’re caring for.
They, like I said, they’re wild animals. The goal is to keep them wild animals. These are
not things that we want to become pets. So, your first responsibility is to make sure
that, you know, a: you do no harm. Whatever you do to them, you’re not harming them in
any way or going to cause–do something to cause them not to be releasable. You want
everything you do to be working towards the goal of getting them released. But, it varies.
It can be something as simple as you get a song bird who’s flown into a window, and simply
has a slight concussion, and just needs a safe place to shake it off, and just a little–recover
a little R and R and be some place safe where a predator won’t get it, and it can be released
the next day. Or it can be an orphaned baby squirrel that fell from a tree, has to be
raised because it can’t be re-united with its family, it has to be raised until it is
about four months old and can be released back into the wild. It will have to know it’s
a squirrel. It will have to be able to relate to members of its own species. It will have
to know how to elude predators, and what predators are. It will have to know and recognize its
food in the wild. So you’re responsible for it knowing all of that. Or it can be an injured
raccoon, or a fawn that has been hit by a car and has a compound fracture. And, then
you have all the things that go along with healing that wound, as well as providing the
proper nutrition, care, housing, for that particular species, so that once it heals
it can be returned to the wild. With wildlife rehab, generally your responsibilities are
pretty much–or, not necessarily responsibilities but your admissions, the things that are going
to be coming into your center everyday–they’re going to be very weather dependent. If you–you
know, if it’s a day after a big storm, you can look for a lot of phone calls because
there are going to be a lot of things that have come out of nest, if it’s during baby
season. Whether its squirrels, or baby birds of one sort or another. So, one thing is going
to be returning your phone calls, interacting with the public, educating the public–you
know, it’s fine, it’s an uninjured baby bird. You can put it back in the nest–it’s an old
wives tale that you can’t touch it and the mom won’t take it back. Yes, you can put it
back in the nest. So, a big part of your responsibility in your day to day dealings are with the public–educating
the public as to what they can do. Because you don’t want any animal in your facility
unless it absolutely has to be there. You know, you want a truly orphaned cottontail,
or a truly orphaned fawn, not a kidnapped cottontail, or a kidnapped fawn. It’s always
best if they can stay with the parents.

8 thoughts on “Wildlife Rehabilitator Career Information : Wildlife Rehabilitator Job Description

  1. I would like to become like an assistant to a licensed rehabilitator, but there don't seem to be any listings in my town…=/

  2. These are good videos but the word "job" being used constantly is definitely misleading…. there's no state or federal funding for wildlife rehabbers, and you're not allowed to charge for services. It's a hobby, and a full-time commitment besides.

  3. Dear friends.

    I have been doing wildlife and exotic animal medicine for over 20 years. While trying to document my case loads for ACZM board certification, I created my YT channel. Recently its acquired a life of its own and I believe we can help each other. As you will see, this planet and it’s inhabitants have been my primary concern.

    My channel has over 2000 videos of wildlife and exotic medicine as well as other projects. I look forward to hearing from you soon.



    James Askew DVM

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