Found a bird? 707-484-6502 8:30am to 5:30pm
Found a bird? 707-484-6502 8:30am to 5:30pm
Thank you for being a first responder to a songbird in need! Please review the information below and text or call us at (707) 484-6502.
If you have found an injured, ill, or orphaned songbird, please text (preferred) or call us at (707) 484-6502. We are open by appointment only and available to receive birds 7 days a week, 8:30 am to 5:30 pm. Please contact us for an appointment and delivery instructions.
If you're calling after business hours, please leave a message or text us. We do our best to respond to text messages after hours until 9 pm. Voicemail messages left after business hours are returned the following day.
Follow the instructions below to safely prepare a bird for transport to our hospital.
We are located at 8050 Elphick Road, Sebastopol, California, 95472.
We care for all native songbirds, however, we do not accept predatory species such as crows, jays, and ravens. We also do not accept non-native species such as starlings, pigeons and house sparrows. If you need assistance with any of these species, please contact us and we will happily provide you with a referral.
Native Songbird Care & Conservation is permitted by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service to rehabilitate and release back to the wild all species of native songbirds.
Without professional training and permits from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife and US Fish and Wildlife Service, it is unlawful to possess a native bird, even if you intend to return it to the wild. If you find an injured, orphaned or ill songbird, please contact us ASAP to ensure the animal receives proper medical care by a trained professional in a legally permitted facility. If you're not located in Sonoma County, please find a rehabilitator near you.
Your gift enables us to provide injured and ill patients with necessary medical treatment, species-appropriate housing, and supportive care during the rehabilitation process. Your contribution also provides nutritious food and essential items that nurture the growth and development of orphaned baby songbirds.
A bird unable to fly is most often a bird in distress, regardless of the cause of its condition. Below are some examples of situations requiring immediate action. If you have found a bird that needs help, please text or call us at (707) 484-6502.
Contact us ASAP. All birds that have contact or suspected contact with a cat require immediate care - even if you don't see obvious injuries, such as blood or a broken wing. Please do not put the bird back outside, under a bush, or in a box hoping for it to recover - it won't. The tiniest puncture wound from a cat's tooth or nail introduces a lethal bacteria into the bird's system. Without proper medical care and antibiotics, the bird will die a slow and painful death.
Learn how to keep birds and cats safe.
Contact us ASAP. All collision victims require immediate care. If a bird hits a window, please don't leave the bird outside stunned and unattended. Safely contain it in a box inside your house and contact NSCC or your nearest wildlife rehabilitation hospital. Any bird that has hit a window should be evaluated by a wildlife rehabilitator for head trauma and other injuries.
Research indicates that many birds who are perceived as “stunned” and left to rest often fly away and later die from traumatic brain injury. Eye injuries are also common when a bird collides with a window. On small songbirds, injuries to the eye can be difficult to detect without the proper medical equipment and sometimes symptoms of traumatic eye injuries do not present until several hours after the collision. Expeditious delivery of a window collision victim to our clinic gives us the opportunity to administer medical care in a timely manner and increases the chances for recovery.
Learn how to prevent window collisions.
Contact us ASAP. Please text a photo or video of the baby or babies to (707) 484-6502, and include a one-sentence description of how you encountered them (found on the ground, disturbed the nest, cat attack). Based on the information you provide, we will determine the species and age of the bird to better assess the situation and offer guidance.
Contrary to the generic and ubiquitous “I found a baby bird” flow charts and most of the information found on the internet, a baby bird found on the ground is often a baby bird that needs help. There are over 90 species of songbirds that breed in Sonoma County. The young of over half of those species leave the nest partially or fully flighted.
There are a handful of species, such as Northern Mockingbirds, American Robins, and California Towhees, that leave the nest unable to fly. Fledglings of these species have fully feathered bodies, short stubby tails, and are able to hop around and follow their parents on the ground and in low bushes. This is normal for their species. Most other birds, such as swallows, Oak Titmice, Black Phoebes, and many others, leave the nest fully or mostly flighted. It is not normal for fledglings of these species to be on the ground when they leave the nest.
While you’re waiting for a response from NSCC or another wildlife hospital, please safely contain the baby and DO NOT offer it any food, water, or medication. The wrong food or incorrect feeding technique can quickly kill a baby bird, and at the very least, the wrong food can cause serious digestive upset. Fluids offered orally can aspirate a baby causing a respiratory infection, or worse, death (essentially drowning the baby).
Keep the baby warm, dark, and quiet. Handling the baby and exposing it to light, sound and movement will not only stress the baby, but it will stimulate its metabolism and cause it to use up precious energetic resources.
Contact us ASAP. Birds caught in sticky rat traps or sticky fly strips require immediate care. Songbirds are extremely delicate, DO NOT attempt to remove the bird from the trap yourself. DO NOT pull on any part of the bird's body or cut the bird's feathers. DO NOT apply oil to the trap or the bird. To prevent further sticking, carefully apply cornmeal or kleenex to the exposed sticky parts of the trap. Follow the instructions for safely containing a bird for delivery to our hospital.
Remove sticky rat traps from your property and dispose of them. Please do not use these harmful and cruel devices. See our "Songbird-safe Rodent Control" information for solutions to rodent problems.
Sticky fly strips can be used safely by fully enclosing them in a cylindrical cage made of 1/2"-3/4" aviary wire. Place the wire cage over the fly strip, squeeze the top and the bottom of the wire cage to close up, then hang the enclosed trap as per usual. The wire cage will allow insects to access the trap, but exclude birds and other non-target species of wildlife.
If you have encountered a songbird in need of rescue please follow these steps to safely capture and prepare the bird for transport to our clinic: