found a baby wild animal or injured wild animal – Now
what do you do?
Lakeside Nature Center at (816) 513-8960 for help and information
on how to handle the animal. If the voice mail answers, leave
a message. If you don't receive a call
back, bring the animal to Lakeside Nature Center by 4:00
p.m. (if it is truly in need of help), or after 9:00 am the
should you help a baby bird?
If you find a young bird on the ground, that doesn’t
have feathers, place the bird back into its nest. Birds DO
NOT have a sense of smell so the parent bird will not desert
its young if you touch it. If you can’t reach the nest,
place the young in a container that has drainage holes in
the bottom and hang it up in a tree where you think the nest
was or in a nearby area on the same tree. Be sure to hang
it in an area that is protected somewhat from rain and hot
sun. The parents will continue to care for the young. If you
find a young bird that is feathered, sitting on the ground,
leave it there. Young birds spend one or two weeks on the
ground while they are strengthening their wing muscles and
learning to fly. You may help by keeping dogs and cats away
from the area. The parent birds are still watching the young
bird and coming down to feed him.
TO RESCUE BABY BIRDS:
If you determine that the baby bird truly needs to be rescued,
do the following:
Place feathered babies in a paper grocery sack. Secure top
with clothes pin or paper clip. Put small, unfeathered babies
in a small container with a soft cloth. Cover container
with another towel.
Keep baby warm and in a
quiet place until ready to transport
to Lakeside Nature Center.
Baby birds do not need to be fed if you are going to bring
them to the Center within a few hours. Never give them water!
If you have to feed them, use cat chow that has been soaked
in warm water until it reaches a spongy consistency.
not handle the bird unnecessarily. Keep it away from children
and pets. Call the Nature Center -
(816) 513-8960 - and bring the bird in as
soon as possible.
should you help a baby mammal?
If you find a baby mammal, such as a bunny, squirrel, skunk,
deer, fox, opossum, raccoon, bat, etc., remember that leaving
it with its mother is always best for its survival. Before
attempting to rescue a baby mammal, be certain that it actually
needs your help. Call Lakeside Nature Center for advice –
(816) 513-8960. Our phones are monitored by volunteers until
9:00 p.m. each night. If you don't
receive a call back, bring the animal to Lakeside Nature
Center by 4:00 p.m. (if it is truly in need of help), or
after 9:00 a.m. the following day.
should a baby stay with its mother?
Generally, if the baby has not been attacked or is not
bleeding, it is probably not hurt or sick. If you find
babies in a nest or den, leave them alone. If the nest is
intact, replace any stray animal.
If you do keep the animal overnight, be sure it is kept in a
warm, quiet place away from children and pets. If it
requires hydration, use only water in an eyedropper or
offer a shallow dish
of water if it can stand. Any animal in need of help must
arrive at Lakeside before 4:00 p.m. or at 9:00 a.m. the
following day at 4701 E. Gregory (across from the Zoo).
If the rabbit is fully furred and about the size of a tennis
ball, it should be left alone. It can be moved to a brushy area
out of harm’s way if there is no protection. If smaller, return
to its nest (use gloves to prevent human smell OR touch all
babies so they smell the same) .
Mother bunnies only come to the nest twice a day, so it is rare
she will be seen. Place two strings or sticks over the nest and
wait 24 hours to see if they have been disturbed. If you’re
convinced the Mother is not returning to the nest or you have
seen a dead adult nearby, bring the rabbit to Lakeside or call
first for advice at 816-513-8960.
All baby opossums less than 6 inches long (not including the
tail) should be considered “orphaned”. Keep the animal warm,
call Lakeside Nature Center for advice or bring to Lakeside as
Gray / Red Fox
If the baby is out of its nest, construct a new nest in a basket
or box and hang as far up the tree trunk as possible where you
see the nest. Often the babies fall out of nests, but Mom
will take them back if she can find them even if you have
touched them! If the tree or tree’s nest is destroyed,
construct a make-shift nest off the ground but near the
original tree/nest site. This will provide her the opportunity
to find the baby.( Keep
out of direct sunlight.) Often Mother squirrels have several
nests, so she’ll move the young ones if needed.
From a distance and completely
out of sight, watch for the Mother to return for about 4-6
hours. After that length of time bring to Lakeside
does a baby mammal need your help?
If a baby is bleeding, shivering, vomiting, or suffered an
attack, the animal is at risk. If you choose to help, approach
with caution, because even baby animals can inflict injury
help the baby, find a container with air holes or a cardboard
box, and place a soft cloth in the bottom. Cover the baby
with a light sheet or towel and gently pick the animal up
and place it in the container. Keep the baby warm by placing
the box half on/half off a heating pad set on low. Do not
give the baby any food or water. Leave the baby in a quiet,
dark place until you can transport it to Lakeside Nature Center.
practice good hygiene when handling animals or nests. You
should wear gloves or use a towel as a barrier to protect
from bites, scratches, disease and parasites. After handling
the animal, clean everything, including towels, clothing,
containers, gloves and hands to prevent spread of disease.
you should not keep a wild animal, even a baby, at your home
any longer than necessary. In Missouri, it is against the
law to keep a wild animal without a permit. If you find a
baby that needs help, licensed rehabilitators at Lakeside
Nature Center can begin caring for the animal as soon as you
can get it there, which will increase the likelihood that
it will survive.