Help Injured or Orphaned Wildlife


In New Jersey those qualified to care for injured or orphaned wildlife are called Wildlife Rehabilitators. Please read this page closely for life-saving information on what to do if you have found injured or orphaned wildlife.

Oftentimes “orphaned” wildlife is not really orphaned and well-intentioned people remove them instead of waiting to allow their mother to return. This can have deadly consequences, since their mother is their best chance at survival.

To find information on how to determine if the animal genuinely needs help (often baby deer and cottontail rabbits do NOT need help), who to call if you need professional assistance and how to keep the animal safe and comfortable until they can be transported to a licensed wildlife rehabilitator, we turn to Wild Baby Rescue Center, here in New Jersey, for their wealth of knowledge. Please visit this link for wonderful information outlining if an animal needs to be rescued or not.

Click here to find a list of volunteer professionals who are qualified to treat, care for and release wild animals: New Jersey Licensed Wildlife Rehabilitators.

For more information on wildlife issues (what to do if you find a baby rabbit, how to help turtles in the road, etc.), click here.

Found a fawn (a baby deer)? Click here to help determine if that baby needs help or not.

In an emergency, the best thing to do is to keep the animal in a warm, quiet place. You can place the animal on a blanket over a heating pad (on LOW, so as not to overheat the animal). Do NOT force any liquid down the throats of any animal (bird or mammal). They could drown or become very sick. Contact a licensed Wildlife Rehabilitator or veterinarian immediately.

Help Wildlife — Offer Your Land

Animal Rehabilitators Alliance of New Jersey is in need of private property to release healthy, rehabilitated wildlife.

“I have been a state-licensed volunteer wildlife rehabilitator for over 15 years, and have seen the number of orphaned and severely injured wildlife continue to grow each year, and with that, so does the amount of space needed to release them,” said Melissa Jacobs, volunteer licensed rehabilitator and board member of ARA. “The state does not give us land to release, and we are not allowed to release on public property. Volunteer rehabilitators, who offer a public service at no cost to the taxpayers, need help from the public who are willing to offer their land to help New Jersey’s wildlife.”

Property owners choose which animals are released, and will be educated on the specific species, their needs, natural behavior, and importance within the local ecosystem. Volunteer rehabilitators are also needed. For more information, please contact Melissa Jacobs, ARA Board Member, at 732-775-5175.

Animal Rehabilitators Alliance is a group of animal professionals and enthusiasts that aims to educate the public about coexisting peacefully with wildlife. ARA also supports rehabilitators in their efforts to save wildlife by assisting them in obtaining and maintaining permits, supplying materials and a crew to build cages, helping to apply for non-profit status, sending volunteers and animal food and money when needed.