East Valley Wildlife has an excellent website http://www.eastvalleywildlife.org/index.html including a homepage with a series of red “panic buttons” to click on that cover almost every situation. They also have a variety of pull down menus that instruct people, step by step, what to do when they come across wildlife that either needs help. Based out of Chandler, their main phone number is 480-814-9339.
Southwest Wildlife in Scottsdale, also has an outstanding website: http://www.southwestwildlife.org/index.htm that includes a list of wildlife emergency phone numbers under their “Resources” tab, specific to the animal in question. To reach them by phone call 480-471-9109.
In both wildlife organizations, most of these phone numbers belong to dedicated rehabilitation volunteers who are skilled in caring for these animals which can then be re-introduced back into their natural habitat. The volunteers, working out of their own homes and at their own expense, are often juggling jobs and family along with rehabilitating wildlife. So be patient and understanding when calling them- often these groups can get more than 100 calls a day. And remember that in most cases, you will have to get the injured animal to the rehabber since they cannot leave all the wildlife already in their care. A donation to help with the cost of feeding and caring for the animal you bring in, while not mandatory, is greatly appreciated.
Before you get to the rehabber- here are some tips:
- Don't leave the animal on the ground if it can't move. It is defenseless against cats, dogs, predator birds and ants. The Arizona sun is also dehydrating.
- Put the animal in a safe, covered container such as a cardboard box or pet carrier lined with an old towel or paper towels.
- Sick and/or injured animals need to be kept warm with a heat source such as a heating pad or hot water bottle but not so hot that it burns them
- Don't force water down the animal's throat. Do not try to feed the animal until you talk to a rehabilitator.
- Don’t handle juvenile or older wild birds more than necessary- keep them in a quiet, dark container and keep children and pets away
If you find a healthy, uninjured nestling recently fallen from a nest, the bird can be put back, Just make sure it’s the right nest, or the parents will reject it. Fledglings just learning to fly can usually flutter and hide in bushes and ground cover. If there are no obvious predators around and the parents are nearby, leave the bird alone. However, fledglings that are injured, orphaned, or in obvious danger from predators need to be rescued.
And if you put water dishes out for birds- put flat stones in them so baby birds- like quail, can get out and not drown.