Injured and orphaned wildlife

  • Injured wildlife
  • Orphaned wildlife

  1. Injured wildlife

    Wildlife encounters take many forms. Sometimes, wildlife can seem to need our help. Other times, we may need help dealing with wildlife that is no longer wild.

    What to do if you encounter an injured animal

    Injured animals are stressed and may react aggressively. These situations can be dangerous. If you injure or kill wildlife while driving, or find wounded or dead wildlife on the road, report it right away to the TIPP line at 1-800-661-0525. If there is an immediate hazard, contact the RCMP.

    When you encounter an injured animal, please keep the following in mind:

    • Be very careful handling any wildlife. It doesn't know you’re trying to help.
    • Many species calm down if put in a dark area, like inside a box.
    • Raptors like hawks and owls, should have their talons secured to prevent them from scratching or seriously clawing you.
    • Survival rates for rescued wildlife are not high. Don't be surprised if the animal dies on its own or is put down.
    • Contact your local conservation officer.
    • Be able to describe the location accurately. In rare cases, you may be asked to return to the site with an officer.
    • No, you can't keep it. Injured animals can require a high degree of specialized care and, even if they survive, rarely become the tame pets we want to keep in our homes.


    It is not legal for the general public to possess live wildlife.

    Conflict with wildlife

    If you are having conflicts with an animal on or off your property, please contact your local conservation officer.

    Find out more about human-wildlife conflict.

  2. Orphaned wildlife

    What to do if you encounter an orphaned animal

    Most animals give birth to their young in the spring, especially during May. In the weeks that follow, people occasionally find young animals left alone and assume they have been separated from or orphaned by their mothers. With the best intentions, people often "rescue" them.

    When you encounter a young animal, please keep the following in mind:

    • Don’t touch or remove the young animal.
    • The mother may have fled because of your presence in the area. Due to the limited mobility of her offspring, the young have remained behind. If you leave the area, the mother will likely rejoin her young.
    • Always be aware that the mother could be nearby and may try to protect her young. Some species can be very aggressive in this situation!
    • No, you can't keep it. Baby animals are appealing pets, but they belong in the wild and are best left alone.