Call us first for advice

Before you pick up or rescue a wild animal, it is always best to first call St. Francis Wildlife for advice. We will help you determine if the animal truly needs to be rescued or if it should be left alone.

These animals need to be rescued

  • • The parent is dead, and the baby is too young to be on its own.
  • • The animal is weak, thin, cold or appears sick.
  • • The animal is injured.
  • • A cat caught the animal, or a dog injured it.
  • • Flies or other insects are on or around it.
  • • The animal is in obvious danger - any life-threatening situation.

Please read the information about specific animals at the bottom this page, or give us a call.

If you have determined that an animal is in need of rescue

  • • Get a cardboard box or plastic container, punch air holes in the top, and place an old t-shirt (not a towel) on the bottom.
  • • Your safety is the first priority; never put yourself at risk; think before you act.
  • • Wearing gloves place the animal in the box.
  • • Keep it quiet, warm, and dark.
  • • Don't stare at it or handle it. Wild animals can literally be scared to death.

Baby animals always need an external source of heat.

  • • Warm up a plastic water bottle in the microwave. Always protect the babies from being in direct contact with the heat source. Wrap an old t-shirt or pillowcase around it, and place it in the box.
  • • Alternative heat sources are heating pads set on low, heated rice or beanbags, or hand warmers.

Important "don'ts"

  • • Don't give water or food to an injured or orphaned animal. You can cause more harm than good.
  • • Don't handle bats, raccoons, foxes or skunks (common rabies vector animals). Always call us.
  • • During transport to our facility, do not turn on your radio; do not blast your air conditioning.


St. Francis Wildlife
Phone: 850 627-4151


If you are not in North Florida, use the link below to find a wildlife rehabilitator near you