Injured and Orphaned Wildlife

What to do if you find a sick, injured or orphaned animal

Contact the Injured and Orphaned Wildlife Program on 6165 4305 (business hours) or Bonorong Wildlife Rescue 0447 264 625 (all hours).

Please note: Bonorong Wildlife Rescue is a privately run, volunteer-based rescue service operating Tasmania-wide.

These four steps will increase the chances of successful release back into the wild:

  1. Keep the animal warm, dark and quiet;
  2. Do not feed it anything, as often this can do more harm than good;
  3. Keep handling to a minimum; and
  4. Keep away from people and domestic animals.

It is in the best interests of the animal for it to be looked after by an experienced wildlife rehabilitator with experience, skills, capacity and appropriate facilities to rehabilitate it for release back into the wild. If you would like to become a wildlife rehabilitator, please contact the Wildlife Management Branch.  


Injured and Orphaned Wildlife Program

The Department works in conjunction with rescue groups, wildlife parks, veterinarians and members of the community who assist in the rehabilitation of sick, injured and orphaned wildlife through the Injured and Orphaned Wildlife Program.

The Program provides advice and support to the network of registered wildlife rehabilitators across the state. The Program encompasses many voluntary roles, including full-time rehabilitation, emergency care, provision of release sites, transport of wildlife and pouch making.

The Department supports public involvement in the conservation and management of Tasmania's wildlife, and recognises the important role the community plays in wildlife rehabilitation.

The aim of wildlife rehabilitation is to provide temporary care to enable release back into the wild. Wildlife undergoing rehabilitation have specialised needs that are different from domestic pets. Nutrition, housing and husbandry must be appropriate to the species and adequately prepare them for life in the wild.



The Department has responsibility for implementing legislation that relates to wildlife rehabilitation. The following legislation governs the activities of wildlife rehabilitators in Tasmania:

  1. Nature Conservation Act 2002
  2. Wildlife (General) Regulations 2010
  3. Wildlife (Exhibited Animals) Regulations 2010
  4. Threatened Species Protection Act 1995
  5. Animal Welfare Act 1995

Permits are required to possess most wildlife for the purposes of rehabilitation.

  Permit for Rehabilitation of Wildlife   (290Kb)

  Wildlife Care Volunteer Registration Form   (209Kb)

  Carers General Requirements   (285Kb)

Review of the Injured and Orphaned Wildlife Program

A review of the Department's Injured and Orphaned Wildlife Program is currently underway. The Department is working with stakeholders to review the Program and identify opportunities to improve the current arrangements. Outcomes of the review are expected to be finalised in 2018.

For further information contact the Wildlife Management Branch.


Wildlife Management Branch
200 Collins Street
GPO Box 44
Phone: 03 6165 4305
Fax: 03 6173 0253