Get Help For A Bird

The fastest way to get help for an injured or orphaned bird is to bring it to Tri-State. We are open to admit patients from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., 365 days a year. Holiday hours may vary.

Our address is 170 Possum Hollow Road, Newark, DE 19711.

Get Help For A Bird

The fastest way to get help for an injured or orphaned bird is to bring it to Tri-State. We are open to admit patients from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., 365 days a year. Holiday hours may vary. 

Our address is 170 Possum Hollow Road, Newark, DE 19711.

At Tri-State, we are serious about the health of our patients, our staff, our volunteers, and the general public who bring patients. We would like to update you on actions we are taking to protect everyone during this challenging time. Due to COVID-19, we are operating with minimal staff and volunteers.

If you have found an injured bird, you may bring it to our facility for care any day of the week between 9 AM and 5 PM. We have set up an admit station in our vestibule to drop off patients to minimize social contact. It is, like the rest of our facility, being sanitized on a regular basis.

If you need assistance with or have a questions about an injured bird, please call 302-737-9543 and follow the prompts as directed. If AFTER following the prompts you are unable to reach a live person, you may leave a message on x103. Please note that this is the ONLY voicemail checked regularly regarding injured or orphaned wild, native birds. We will return your call as soon as we can. Thank you.

Thank you for your understanding and for caring about native wildlife. We are all in this together and we will continue to do our very best for the birds – be well! 

If you have found a wild bird that is injured, wet, cold, or obviously orphaned, you will want to prepare a transport carriersafely capture the bird, and then bring it to a licensed wildlife rehabilitator.

If you find a bird on the ground during the spring or summer months that does not have obvious injuries or is hopping around, it may be a healthy baby. Please see “Could this bird be a baby? Does it need Help?” for more information..


If you find an injured owl or hawk, or other raptor, approach these animals with great caution. Their talons and beaks can be dangerous, even if the animal is injured! Be sure to securely place an injured raptor in a closed box with air holes or in a pet carrier for its safety and yours. Call your local wildlife rehabilitator, animal control, or State wildlife agency for guidance, if needed.

Tri-State has only a small number of volunteers who are able to go out on retrieval calls. We assist as much as our resources allow, but we rely on concerned citizens to bring injured wild birds to us for treatment.

It is normal to see young birds on the ground between the months of April and September. During this time, many healthy young birds are removed from the care of their natural parents by well-intended individuals. If you see a bird hopping on the ground without obvious injury, see the following guides to help determine if the bird needs intervention. If you are unsure, please call your local rehabilitator for help. 

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To make the best use of our resources in accordance with our mission, we only take in injured, orphaned and oiled native wildlife. This allows us to focus on providing the best possible care to wild native birds in need. It is important to know that we made this decision based on the responsibility to our environment, hospital resources, and staff hours.  It is not a decision we made lightly and the life of any animal should be respected and handled with care.  

We are not able to rehabilitate non-native, exotic, or domestic birds. We cannot provide domestic or exotic placement servicesWe are not able to hatch or care for eggs. If you need assistance for a domestic, exotic, or non-native species, please contact your local veterinarian or animal shelter.

It can be difficult to identify a wild non-native bird from a native one, especially when they are young. If you are unsure, we can help with identification. Please see below for some common non-native, exotic, or domestic species. For more information on invasive species, visit

Here are a few things you can do to help the bird overnight. Remember, only licensed rehabilitators can safely and legally treat wild animals. Make sure to bring the injured bird to a wildlife rehabilitator as soon as possible. Do not attempt to hold, pet, or talk to the bird. This interaction is not soothing to a wild animal. Wild animals view humans as predators.

Place the bird in a container with air holes away from pets, children, direct sunlight, or cold. If you are using a cardboard box, make sure you put the air holes in it before placing the bird inside. You can also place the bird in a large pet carrier. Placing the box or cage in a closed bathroom or laundry room can provide a calm, quiet area overnight. Do not peek into the box.

Unless you have been instructed to do so by a licensed wildlife rehabilitator or veterinarian, do not offer the bird any food or water. Baby birds can aspirate or develop pneumonia from being fed incorrectly. Injured birds may not be fully waterproof and can become dangerously cold or drown if they fall into a water dish.

Do not disturb the bird or try to provide any medical treatments. Wild birds are not accustomed to people, and handling can cause them a great deal of stress. For many species and injured individuals, an overload of stress can be fatal. 

Bring the bird to a licensed wildlife rehabilitator first thing in the morning. If you cannot transport the bird yourself, please make arrangements with  a friend or family member or call your local wildlife center. 


If you have found an injured native bird, you must get it to a wildlife rehabilitator immediately. Although it may be tempting to try to raise or help the bird yourself, caring for birds requires special skills, equipment, and housing. It is also against the law for you to do so. Just as veterinarians are professionally trained to give medical treatment to cats and dogs, wildlife rehabilitators are specially trained to care for wild animals. Broken bones and traumatic injuries or diseases require veterinary care.  Tri-State’s Wild Bird Clinic has full-time wildlife veterinarians on staff and is fully licensed to legally care for and treat wild birds. We have 40 years of experience in proper husbandry and medical treatments for wild native birds.

While it may be done with good intentions, providing medical care for an injured animal outside of a licensed facility will often make the animal’s condition worse.  The only way for a wild animal to get the proper medical treatment it needs is to bring it to a licensed and trained rehabilitator.

It is against the law in the United States, Canada, Europe, and Mexico for anyone who is not a licensed Wildlife Rehabilitator, educator, or falconer to possess wild native birds. Wild native birds are protected under federal law and require a federal permit to possess.

Please note: We are not a facility for domestic, exotic, or non-native species. Please contact your local veterinarian or animal shelter for help regarding these species.

If you have an animal trapped on a sticky trap or glue trap, please DO NOT attempt to remove it. Pulling an animal off these traps can cause severe injuries (broken bones, dislocated joints, permanent feather damage) or even death. Place tissues or paper towels on any exposed sticky surfaces to prevent the animal from becoming stuck even more, and take the animal to Tri-State or your nearest wildlife rehabilitator.




Delaware: or

In other regions of the country, to find out where the nearest Wildlife Rehabilitator is located, contact your state Division of Natural Resources or Fish and Wildlife. The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (in Canada contact the Canadian Wildlife Service, part of Environment Canada) may also have a regional office in your area. You can also call the National Wildlife Rehabilitator’s Association (NWRA) Head Office in St. Cloud, Minnesota at (320) 230-9920. NWRA has members in every state and parts of Canada and Europe. Your local SPCA, Humane Society, veterinarian, or police station may also be able to assist you.

Another resource is Tri-State is not affiliated with or any of the websites listed and does not guarantee the listings to be accurate or the rehabilitators contained within to be licensed. Licensing requirements vary by state.

For instructions on other species, please contact your local wildlife rehabilitator or local Fish & Wildlife agency.

Most wildlife rehabilitation facilities are non-profit organizations that depend heavily on volunteers and donations. If you are interested in learning more about helping native wildlife, consider becoming a volunteer or donor. 

It is against the law in the United States, Canada, Europe, and Mexico for anyone who is not a licensed Wildlife Rehabilitator, educator, or falconer to possess native wildlife. 

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