Nature conservation

Native animals

Getting involved in native animal rehabilitation

If you want to rescue or rehabilitate native animals, the first step is to get an authority from your local rehabilitation group. These groups are licensed by the Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) in accordance with the Rehabilitation of protected fauna policy. Find the groups that operate in your local area.

Once you have joined a local group you can attend an introductory training course to learn about the responsibilities of a rehabilitator, and basic rescue and immediate care techniques. When you have successfully completed the course, you will be issued with a written authority, which will allow you to operate under the terms of your group's OEH licence.

If you want to care for a particular species in your home, you will generally have to undertake advanced training and have your facilities approved by an experienced rehabilitator.

OEH has identified species that are particularly difficult to rehabilitate successfully and require specialist facilities and equipment. Some species such as birds of prey (raptors) (PDF 78KB), may be cared for by group members provided they are able to meet strict training and aviary requirements. Other species such as marine mammals (seals and dolphins), can only be housed in licensed zoos and aquaria.

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Page last updated: 20 September 2017