I found an injured raptor! Now what?
Injured and sick birds need specialized diets and if dehydrated must be rehydrated before eating solid foods. Do not attempt to do this yourself. It is illegal to hunt, harm, harass, or posses any hawk, eagle, owl, falcon, or vulture without proper US Fish and Wildlife Service and state-issued permits.
- Download this PDF and leave in your car!
First, observe the raptor to determine if the bird is actually injured. Look for bleeding, a droopy wing, a broken bone, flies or maggots on the bird, does not have food nearby or doesn't move if approached, or the bird appears to have no energy.
Next, note the exact location of the bird and survey the area to make sure that no other animal (like a dog or cat), human, or motorized vehicle can get to the bird.
Then call someone with experience handling an injured raptor:
Pick the closest facility to you and call – Remember that most facilities are staffed by volunteers. If someone does not answer the phone, please leave your name and phone number and any details you may have about the bird. The facility may direct you to a licensed individual rehabilitator nearer you.
- SW, WC, and Des Moines Area
- SOAR – Saving Our Avian Resources – (712) 830-6116
- NW Iowa / Spirit Lake Area
- Orphaned & Injured Wildlife – (712) 336-3827
- Iowa City / Cedar Rapids Area
- MacBride Raptor Project – To report an injured raptor call
(319) 398-5495 anytime of the day. Don't forget to leave a message with your name and phone number, and remember MRP is staffed by volunteers. Therefore, your call will be returned as quickly as possible.
- Ames Area
- Wildlife Care Clinic – Iowa State University Vet Med –
(515) 294-4009 or email@example.com
- Black Hawk County and NE Iowa
- Black Hawk Rehabilitation Project – (319) 277-6511
You could also find and call your nearest:
Please know that you can always call us!
- SOAR at (712) 830-6116
- What to do if you find an injured raptor in Iowa. (115 kb PDF)