Wildlife Rehabilitation

At Chintimini Wildlife Center
squirrel feeding

Program Overview

The Chintimini Wildlife Center (CWC) provides care for an average of over 900 injured and orphaned native wild animals each year, with the goal of releasing them back into their natural habitats for a second chance at life. (see animal statistics) CWC is open every day of the year for animal admissions and provides these services free of charge to the members of our community.

Bald Eagle with Doctor

Bald Eagle with Sabra Thomas, DVM

Wildlife Rehabilitation Defined

Wildlife rehabilitation involves medically treating injured or sick non-domestic wildlife, and raising orphaned or abandoned wildlife, using methods that prepare them for release and survival in the wild.

Wildlife rehabilitation involves medical assessment, stabilization, and treatment – initially performed by experienced and licensed rehabilitators who are trained to do physical examinations, provide emergency first aid, take x-rays, immobilize fractures, manage wounds, and perform basic laboratory diagnostics.

Numerous local veterinarians donate advanced medical care when needed. After veterinary procedures, rehabilitators fill the roles of technician, dietician, and physical therapist. Once conditioning is adequate, rehabilitators make the decision to release.


The facilities at CWC include a complete veterinary hospital equipped with x-ray, anesthesia, and surgical equipment, plus a diagnostic laboratory, intensive-care unit, incubators, and pharmacy.

Over 40 outdoor enclosures provide housing for animals recovering from their injuries. Our outdoor cages include three flight cages – 30, 60 and 80 feet long, respectively, and numerous chain link and specialty cages for housing a wide variety of animals.

The rehabilitation facilities are located within the boundaries of a beautiful ash swale forest that provides a cool, quiet buffer between our recovering patients and the human world of noise and activity.


Over 100 volunteers donate more than 10,000 hours a year to run the Center, caring for wild animals every single day throughout the year. The daily operations of the animal care program are overseen by an Animal Care Director staff position, and several part-time Animal Care Technicians are employed during our busy spring and summer seasons.

Affiliations and Permits

CWC is affiliated with the Oregon Wildlife Rehabilitation Association (OWRA), the National Wildlife Rehabilitation Association (NWRA), and the International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council (IWRC). CWC follows all the standards and policies endorsed by the IWRC and the NWRA.

State and federal wildlife regulatory authorities must license rehabilitators and/or rehabilitation centers. The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife requires that rehabilitators pass a written test in order to get licenses.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service must also license any rehabilitator working with migratory birds or raptors. Those working with marine mammals, eagles, or endangered or threatened species need additional permits, which are issued at the discretion of local biologists after applicants have successfully completed an exam. Rehabilitators must have a state license before they can be issued a federal permit.

Training requirements for rehabilitators include knowledge of medical skills, handling and restraint skills, animal behavior, natural history, diet and nutritional needs and differences among species, and legal and regulatory information.


CWC receives no funds from federal, state, county, or city agencies and is totally dependent on memberships, donations, merchandise sales, grants, special-event fundraisers, and business partnerships to pay for its daily operation. You can Help!

More info about Rehabilitation?

Contact Mary Estes at rehab@chintiminiwildlife.org or 541-745-5324.