Information for Volunteers: Sea To Sky Injured Wildlife

SEA TO SKY INJURED WILDLIFE EMERGENCY RESPONSE NETWORK

Helping wildlife in the Sea to Sky get to the designated wildlife rehabilitation centres safely and quickly.

INFORMATION FOR VOLUNTEERS:

[NOTE: The most up-to date version of this can be found by accessing the Google Doc version of Information for Volunteers ]

Locals and visitors commonly encounter injured wildlife, but are not sure what to do or whom to call. We need to improve public knowledge in this area and provide resources and training for volunteers.

Injured birds, small mammals, raccoons, and many others rely upon volunteers to help them get to the designated wildlife rehabilitation centres in the lower Mainland quickly and safely. We have established a protocol and volunteer network to strengthen and support the community’s response to injured wildlife.

This volunteer network works strictly under the guidance of the designated and permitted provincial wildlife rehabilitation centres. The network also aims to work closely with existing wildlife and animal welfare advocacy groups in the local community. 

We always need volunteers!

CLICK HERE to SIGN UP TO VOLUNTEER!

  • What is the purpose of the volunteer network?
    1. To help injured wildlife in the Sea to Sky get to the designated wildlife rehabilitation centres safely and quickly.
  • What wildlife do we help with?
    1. Small mammals, birds, even raccoons.
    2. Large wildlife (bears, cougars, coyotes….) should be handled by conservation officers.
  • Who can care for wildlife?
    1. It is illegal for members of the public (including veterinary clinics) to hold wildlife for longer than 24 hours. Wildlife in need of medical care need to be transferred to the nearest wildlife rehabilitation center as quickly as possible. We follow the direct guidance of the permitted provincial wildlife rehabilitation centres, such as the BCSPCA.
    2. Call the BC SPCA Provincial Call Centre at 1-855-622-7722 if you are unsure about what to do.

IMPORTANT CONTACTS:

  • BIRDS/SMALL MAMMALS:  1-855-622-7722 (BCSPA Vancouver Wildlife In Distress Phone Number)
  • LARGE ANIMALS (bears, coyotes, cougars, etc.): 1-877-952-7277 (Whistler Conservation Officer) 
  • DEAD WILDLIFE: 
    • Roadside dead animals: within Whistler call the Animal Control sector of Whistler Bylaws (604 935 8280). For Hwy 99 from Horseshoe Bay to Function Junction call DriveBC’s Report a Highway Problem: (1-866-918-1010). 
    • Dead wild birds: 1-866-431-BIRD (2473). Several government agencies work together to investigate wild bird mortality.
  • ADDITIONAL WILDLIFE REHABILITATION & EMERGENCY CONTACTS (more detailed list)

LEARN MORE ABOUT WILDLIFE:

WILDLIFE EMERGENCY RESPONSE PROTOCOL FOR VOLUNTEERS:

  1. A volunteer (or several volunteers) will be designated to respond to an alert issued by a member of the public (“Good Samaritan”).
    • The volunteer will be expected to communicate with the volunteer coordinator at all times, ensuring that all requested updates are provided and that all protocols are followed until the case is closed.
  2. The volunteer will begin to document the incident using this GOOGLE FORM (CASE LOG
    • Gather all of the necessary details as you go. You can go back and edit your responses after it has been submitted if you keep the same browser window open.
  3. The volunteer will attend to the site where the animal is located:
    • If the animal is still at large, the volunteer should observe the animal from a distance. 
    • If the animal is already in a box, the volunteer should ensure that the details of the Good Samaritan were documented in the Case Log (including the concerns and reason that the animal was trapped, and the location). The Good Samaritans should also be asked if they would be willing to drive the animal to the rehabilitation centre in Vancouver.
  4. Next the volunteer will call BCSPCA Wildlife Emergency Hotline 1-855-622-7722 for instructions
    • Not all wildlife need rescuing- they can help you decide.
    • If you have found a wild animal in distress, they need help as soon as possible. Like our pets, wild animals need professional care to recover if they are sick or injured.
    • It is very important to note that our volunteer network works under the direct guidance and advice of the designated provincial wildlife rehabilitation organizations (SPCA, ARC, etc.). Ours is not a renegade organization, and all of our volunteers are expected to maintain clear, open, honest and direct communication with the volunteer coordinators and with the provincial wildlife rehabilitators
    • Additional directories of wildlife rehabilitation centres in British Columbia or internationally
  5. The volunteer may need to assist with safely capturing the animal (without injuring the animal or the volunteer) and putting it into a well ventilated box (or a crate if more appropriate).
  6. Next we will need to find a driver to get the animal to the designated rehabilitation facility as quickly as possible. The volunteer coordinator will usually assist with posting to recruit drivers, but the volunteer may also be asked to help. To find a ride we will:
    • POST on social media 
      • Instagram: @seatoskyinjuredwildlife (post in stories→ it automatically posts to facebook stories)
      • Facebook: @seatoskyinjuredwildlife (please create new post on the page asking for drivers, then share the post into the following facebook groups: Whistler Winter/Summer, Hitching the Sea to Sky, UBC Rideshare, Sea to Sky road conditions
    • Send a mass text / email out to all volunteer drivers.
  7. The volunteer may be asked to care for the animal overnight if a ride cannot be found until the next day. 
    • The volunteer will need to maintain open and direct communication with the volunteer coordinator to provide status updates to ensure that all protocols are followed.
  8. Some injured wildlife will require emergency veterinary care prior to transfer. Please communicate with the volunteer coordinator prior to enlisting vet assistance. 
  9. Volunteers are expected to keep the volunteer coordinator updated on the status of the patient, and to provide any requested photo or video footage. It is important for us to keep our volunteer network and the community updated on the status of the patient on social media. 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s