Found an Injured Raptor?

Call Teton Raptor Center's Injured Bird Hotline

307.200.6019

If you are in the Jackson Hole Area, call TRC's Injured Bird Hotline. We check the hotline messages between 9am and 7pm, 7 days a week.


If you are located outside of the state of Wyoming, you are required to contact your state Game and Fish Agency before the bird can be transported over state lines to TRC, and in some cases, there may be a closer permitted wildlife rehabilitator in your area. If you are in Idaho, visit https://idfg.idaho.gov/offices to find your regional office.

Our team is specifically trained in rescuing wild raptors. If you are unable to reach a TRC staff member, your local Game and Fish Agency can also help rescue raptors. If you already have possession of the bird, keep it in a dark box lined with a clean towel or sheet, and keep the box in a quiet and warm room. Do not attempt to feed or give water to the injured raptor- this can do more harm than good. We will get in touch with you as soon as we can. If possible, write down as much as you can about the circumstances involving the injured bird, including specific location and nearby objects, such as buildings or animals.

Teton Raptor Center is legally permitted by federal and state laws to rehabilitate raptor species. We are unable to treat songbirds, waterfowls, shorebirds, or any other non-raptor species. If you have an injured non-raptor species, contact your local Game and Fish Agency or veterinarian. To identify the injured bird and determine if is a raptor, see our page on All About Raptors or visit the Cornell Lab of Ornithology's website.

If you find an injured raptor, special steps are needed to protect it and yourself. The following steps will ensure everyone's safety:

  • Never feed an injured raptor. Raptors have very specific dietary needs and even the best meat available may be inappropriate for a raptor. Often injured raptors are suffering from dehydration and/or emaciation, so food or water may kill it.
  • Handle the raptor only if absolutely necessary! The less contact it has with people, the more likely it will be to survive. Stress is deadly for these birds.
  • If you must handle a raptor, wear long, heavy gloves and use a blanket or towel to cover the bird. Gently fold the raptor's wings against its body into a normal, relaxed position.
  • Place the raptor in a cardboard box with small ventilation holes cut near the floor of the box. The box should be slightly larger than the bird. Less room to thrash around means less chance of the raptor causing itself injury.
  • Cover the bottom of the cardboard box with a clean towel or sheet, DO NOT line with hay or straw because this can expose the raptor to fungi that may lead to deadly lung infections.
  • NEVER use a wire cage, transport raptors in the open bed of a truck, or leave the raptor in a place where temperatures could reach extremes.
  • Provide the raptor with a dark, quiet, and warm environment. DO NOT keep the raptor any longer than absolutely necessary and always keep it away from pets and children.
  • Remember, even a seriously injured or seemingly incapacitated raptor can be potentially dangerous. Even if you are trying to help the bird, it will be frightened and may perceive you as a threat. Raptors can be quite unpredictable. Be particularly wary of the beak and talons.


FAQ's


Q: What happens after you receive an injured raptor?

A: After receiving an injured raptor we start a treatment plan based on its injury or illness and consult with our veterinary advisor. After thorough treatment and rehabilitation, we always hope to return our patients to the wild!

  • For more information on the necessary steps for treating an injured raptor, check out our Stages of Rehabilitation.
  • The ultimate goal is to return raptors we receive back to the wild. See our current patients and most recent success stories in our News Releases.

Q: How do birds arrive at Teton Raptor Center?

A: We receive calls on our Injured Raptor Hotline and either a staff member or volunteer will either go rescue the bird or meet an individual who has the injured raptor. We also work with Wyoming Game and Fish and Idaho Fish and Game to transport injured raptors to our center.

Q: Can I help?

A: Yes you can! If you are interested in helping TRC rescue and transport injured birds of prey consider donating or becoming a volunteer.

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