As the weather warms up, many critters of the world start building nests and raising young. Rabbits build shallow nests on the ground, typically in grassy areas near bushes and shrubs. Your yard may be a lovely place for a rabbit to start a family!
Nests can be hard to see on the ground, as they are often made of grass and fur and are well-hidden, particularly when the surrounding grass grows longer. You can help save baby rabbits; check for nests before you mow the lawn.
Squirrels, raccoons, skunks, and other animals may find their way into your attic, chimney, porch, or other part of the house. Your house may look like a great home to a squirrel or other animal seeking shelter, but allowing wild animals to remain in your home where they don't belong is not safe for you or the animal.
Chimneys can be particularly troublesome for our flighted friends. Birds as big as owls can accidentally become stuck in uncovered chimneys while chasing prey. A large bird stuck in a chimney can damage its flight feathers and become injured, dehydrated, and starved if it cannot free itself quickly.
Help keep wild animals in the wild, where they belong!
Turtles are one of the oldest creatures on Earth, and they can use our help! Turtles move around for many reasons, from breeding to housekeeping, and sometimes roads get in the way. You're most likely to see turtles in the road from April to October, but it's not a bad idea to stay alert at all times.
If you find a turtle crossing the road, save it from the possibility of being hit by a car by helping it across to the other side.
It may seem harmless or even helpful to throw food scraps like an apple core out the window when you're driving. The thought of helping a critter find a free meal sounds good! But good intentions can have tragic results.
A food scrap on the side of the road can attract rodents and other small animals. Larger animals like hawks and owls that prey on rodents are then attracted to the roadside in search of their own meals. Roads are not safe places for wildlife, and raptors are often hit by cars when hunting on the roadside.
Most of the time, nature takes care of its wild critters quite well. The best place for wild animals is in the wild. Sometimes, though, critters could use our help.
In the spring, baby season brings many people into contact with wildlife. For example, a baby bird whose nest fell out of a tree during a storm may be injured. The best people to help are licensed, professional wildlife rehabilitators. As kind and gentle as you may be, irreparable harm can be done to wild animals (particularly babies) if they are not properly cared for. A baby bird might become imprinted on you and as a result will never survive in the wild because it thinks it is a human, not a bird.
Always contact a professional prior to touching or moving an injured, abandoned, or distressed wild animal. They can help you determine if the animal truly needs human intervention, and the best way to go about helping the animal.
The National Wildlife Rehabilitators Association can help you find a rehabilitator in your area.
Animal Help Now uses your zip code or location to help you locate rehabilitators and rescue resources.