Gulf Coast Wildlife Rehab
Two great ways to help us!
GCWR has many needs through out the year. Feel free to contribute an 'in-kind' donation today. You may contact us at (228) 238-5505 to arrange for pick-up or drop off.
You may also consider a one-time or recurring PayPal donation today.
Wildlife Rehabilitators Code of Ethics
A wildlife rehabilitator should strive to achieve high standards of animal care through knowledge and an understanding of the field. Continuing efforts must be made to keep informed of current rehabilitation information, methods, and regulations.
A wildlife rehabilitator should be responsible, conscientious, and dedicated, and should continuously work toward improving the quality of care given to wild animals undergoing rehabilitation.
A wildlife rehabilitator must abide by local, state, provincial and federal laws concerning wildlife, wildlife rehabilitation and associated activities.
A wildlife rehabilitator should establish safe work habits and conditions, abiding by current health and safety practices at all times.
A wildlife rehabilitator should acknowledge limitations and enlist the assistance of a veterinarian or other trained professional when appropriate.
A wildlife rehabilitator should respect other rehabilitators and persons in related fields, sharing skills and knowledge in the spirit of cooperation for the welfare of animals.
A wildlife rehabilitator should place optimum animal care above personal gain.
A wildlife rehabilitator should strive to provide professional and humane care in all phases of wildlife rehabilitation, respecting the wildness and maintaining the dignity of each animal in life and in death. Releasable animals should be maintained in a wild condition and released as soon as appropriate. Non–releasable animals, which are inappropriate for education, foster–parenting, or captive breeding have a right to euthanasia.
A wildlife rehabilitator should encourage community support and involvement through volunteer training and public education. The common goal should be to promote a responsible concern for living beings and the welfare of the environment.
A wildlife rehabilitator should work on the basis of sound ecological principles, incorporating appropriate conservation ethics and an attitude of stewardship.
A wildlife rehabilitator should conduct all business and activities in a professional manner, with honesty, integrity, compassion, and commitment, realizing that an individual's conduct reflects on the entire field of wildlife rehabilitation.
Perspective Development and Requirements for Rehabbing
Wildlife rehabilitation takes a very dedicated and devoted individual who is caring, loving and at the same time understands the needs of these animals in order to release back into the wild.
How do I learn to rehab wildlife?
Volunteers at an established rehabilitation organization attend training sessions and also observe qualified rehabilitators. Reading and asking questions will help you gain knowledge needed to be successful and help preserve the Gulf Coast wildlife. GCWR will always encourage furthering your knowledge through any means available.
Do I need a permit?
In the State of Mississippi a Wildlife Rehabilitation Permit is required. However, you can also be a sub-permittee on another individuals permit as long as you have the permit available to show with your name on it (for instance, GCWR’s permit is in Trish Stiles name and we have a total of 51 volunteers attached to it). The Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks (MDWFP) issues permits for mammals and all non-migratory birds. The United States Fish and Wildlife Service issue the permit for all migratory birds. Permits are updated as needed and renewed annually.
Permits are a privilege. Do not abuse them!
As stated earlier, dedication and time are extremely important. Sometimes family may be second to your responsibilities to the wildlife in your care. One situation would be a baby squirrel. Baby squirrels require feeding every two hours. This will take a lot of your time. Also rehabilitation can get very expensive. Majority of organizations dealing with wildlife rehabilitation are non-profit and rely on donations and grants. At GCWR we provide baby formula until animal starts eating solid food. It is the responsibility of the rehabber to provide regular food. Any veterinarian care and medicine will be provided by GCWR.
GCWR recommends if you are interested in rehabilitation, choose one wildlife animal. Get knowledgeable and proficient before trying different wildlife. Once you are confident, then you may choose to expand your knowledge and learn other wildlife. Join National Wildlife Rehabilitation Association (NWRA). This association will allow you to network with other rehabilitators and obtain information and support.
We highly recommend you visit with one of our permitted rehabilitators and see what all is involved. GCWR is always looking for dedicated rehabilitators.
If you believe this to be you, feel free to contact us on the next page.