Wildlife rehabilitation involves all aspects of assessing, treating, and preparing for release both injured and orphaned wildlife. The intent is not to simply keep animals alive, but to return them to a state whereby they are capable of surviving unassisted in the wild and that they maintain their fear of humans.
For the WROS, our goal is to minimize the unnecessary removal of wildlife from their natural habitat unless it is truly orphaned, injured or in need of assistance.
The vast majority of animals admitted for wildlife rehabilitation have suffered injury from human related interaction: windows, buildings, power lines, vehicles, traps, firearms, poisons, urban sprawl, and even harmless but curious children and pets pose threats to a variety of wildlife.
It is important to realize that animals have never encountered predators that can move as fast as an automobile, nor have they witnessed predators in numbers that compare to the volume of traffic seen on busy highways. Hawks and owls cannot comprehend what the role of a power line or pole is except that it offers an excellent perch above hunting grounds. The point is that humans have 'progressed' to a level where our actions can no longer be considered natural. Most of what we do is out of balance with nature and consequently the majority of the species on this planet cannot adapt fast enough to the changes we make to our environment. Wildlife rehabilitators have chosen the role of caring for those animals that suffer unnaturally and the WRSOS supports these individuals and their efforts.
The WRSOS works with volunteer target veterinary clinics throughout the province to provide proper medical for injured and ill wildlife. The WRSOS also works with our network of volunteers to help injured and orphaned wildlife be rescued and transported to vet clinics or rehabilitators.
Each animal that is injured or appears ill is examined and diagnosed by a veterinarian. A plan for treatment is made for each case, provided by the veterinarian or the wildlife rehabilitator. Treatments may include:
The treatments needed are to allow for the animal's best chance at making a full recovery. If the animal will not survive on its own, a painless euthanasia is administered to prevent the animal from suffering further.
Interested in becoming a wildlife rehabilitator? WRSOS recommends volunteering for one of our provincially licensed wildlife rehabilitators for a period of time. Use our contact us page to request more information on finding a rehabilitator in your area.
WRSOS occasionally hosts the International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council's Basic Rehabilitation course. For more information on becoming a wildlife rehabilitator visit www.theiwrc.org, or contact your local saskatchewan environment office for information on getting a permit.
Costs include minimal veterinarian care, plus food and bedding. If an animal arrives injured, costs are often much higher. Animals are released when the wildlife rehabilitator feels it has the greatest chance for survival. Enclosures for birds and mammals can cost a rehabilitator over $5,000 and are another item that rehabilitators frequently require.