Wildlife Information


Calgary Wildlife treats either injured or orphaned wildlife and provides medical treatment and care until they are fit for release back in the wild; we strive to release all wildlife that we treat back into their natural habitats. Calgary Wildlife operates under a wildlife permit (issued by Alberta Environment and Parks), a Migratory Species permit (issued by Environment Canada) and a Scientific Endangered Species permit (issued by Environment Canada). These permits dictate which species we can take.

Species that are accepted at the CWRS:


• All songbirds (examples: robins, waxwings, finches, etc.)
• All corvids (examples: crows, ravens, magpies, etc.)
• All raptors (examples: hawks, falcons, owls, eagles)
• All waterfowl (examples: Canada goose, mallard ducks, etc.)
• Small mammals (examples: white-tailed prairie hares, porcupines, etc.)
• Small carnivores (examples: red fox, bobcat, weasels, etc.)
• Invasive species* (examples: eastern grey squirrels, house sparrows, starlings, etc.)



This is a service that we provide to the public that ensures these animals are treated humanely and minimizes the risk of individuals illegally caring for wildlife in their homes, an activity that is highly dangerous and detrimental to the ultimate outcome for that animal. Injured or orphaned pigeons are accepted by Calgary Wildlife for treatment.

Large mammals:


If you encounter a large mammal that is in trouble, please contact the Environment and Parks at (403) 297-6423 for assistance.

Calgary Wildlife does not have the capabilities to take large mammals, such as adult bears or cougars. However, we have taken in juveniles and performed essential medical treatment before transferring them. Please feel free to contact CWRS (403-214-1312) if you are unsure whether a particular animal will be accepted.


For more Information call 403-214-1312

Handling wild animals


It is illegal to care for sick, injured, or orphaned wildlife in Calgary unless you are a licensed wildlife rehabilitator. To ensure the safety and health of people and wildlife, members of the public should generally avoid handling wildlife. Wild animals can inflict serious injury and can be carriers of disease and parasites that are transmittable to humans and domestic animals. Injured and orphaned wildlife should be treated by professionals who have the permits, knowledge, and access to species-specific food sources that are required.


You should not attempt to assist an injured or orphaned animal if there is a risk to personal safety or to the safety of others. If you find an orphaned or injured wild animal, follow the procedure outlined below. If the animal poses a threat to public health or safety, call City of Calgary 311 Service or Calgary Police Department for assistance (911).

Found an Injured or Orphaned Wild Animal?


1. STOP. Observe to ensure help is truly required. Wildlife need help if you observe the following:
    Obvious wounds: swelling or bleeding
    Dangling wings or limbs
    Trouble holding head erect
    Problems standing
    Difficulty breathing
    Inability to see or react to stimuli
    Signs of neurological trauma: seizures, walking in circles
    Uneven loss of fur or feathers


2. CALL FOR HELP. Phone our hotline (403-214-1312) if you are unsure of what to do, and to receive advice on how to proceed.


3. STAY SAFE. If you determine an animal needs help, please remember your safety comes first!


For more detailed description refer to Finding Wildlife

A Note on Orphaned Wildlife


With some species, it is normal for parents to leave their offspring alone for extended periods of time. Many infant mammals are left on their own for extended periods of time while their parents are foraging for food. In many bird species, the offspring outgrow their nest and their parents continue to raise them on ground level. Many species return to their young near dusk and dawn. A young animal that looks well-fed with bright eyes and clean fur or feathers is probably not orphaned.

What Happens to Injured wild animals


CWRS patients have usually been injured or orphaned due to unfortunate human interactions, including being hit by vehicles, attacked by pets, electrocuted, poisoned, flying into power lines and windows, shot by pellet guns or arrows, chased or tortured, caught in leg-hold traps, tortured, among many others. Injured animals are examined and diagnosed by a veterinarian and given the appropriate medical or surgical treatment. They are then rehabilitated and released when appropriate.

What Happens to Orphaned wild animals


Orphaned animals are raised in our facility, sometimes with one of our foster parent animals. Once orphans are big enough and able to fend for themselves, depending on the time of year and migratory cycles, they are released back to the wild.