OWL (Orphaned Wildlife) Rehabilitation Society is a non-profit organization whose staff and volunteers are dedicated to the rescue, rehabilitation, and release of injured and orphaned raptors and to educating the public on the conservation and importance of them.
OWL became a registered Society in January of 1985 (Registration No. S-19879) and is run by a Board of Directors. We are licensed through the Ministry of Forests, Lands, and Natural Resource Operations.
The facility specializes in raptors only (eagles, falcons, hawks, ospreys, owls, & vultures), which can number over seven hundred individuals coming into the facility each year with varying injuries and issues. They are sent to OWL from all over British Columbia, other provinces, and sometimes the USA, with the majority of the birds arriving locally from the Lower Mainland with the help of a network of dedicated volunteers. We also receive assistance from Conservation Officers, veterinary clinics, Police Officers, highway maintenance crews, and other community groups in rescuing these birds and receive transportation help from Bandstra Trucking Company, Pacific Coastal Airlines, Central Mountain Air, Harbour Air Seaplanes, and many others.
Over 46 non-releasable raptors reside at OWL as Permanent Residents where they perform important duties and continue to help their species. Some assist with fostering orphans to prevent the young from imprinting on people and helping with their integration back to the wild, some go out to schools and events with our Educators and Volunteers as Educational Ambassadors to help educate the public on the conservation of these species and the dangers they face, and others are viewable to the public during our Public Visiting hours.
OWL continues to expand their programs and the facility through public donations and the support of companies who provide monetary donations, sponsorships, materials, and supplies. We undertook the development of a Wildlife Museum to enhance the educational programs and to increase public awareness of raptors, their habitat, and the environmental impact people have on the natural world and OWL offers Onsite and Offsite education programs for a variety of different groups. Groups can visit OWL to learn about raptors and the environment in our Schoolhouse and have the chance to view our Front Education Birds or we can come to you with an OWL Educator and two of our glove trained Raptor Educational Ambassadors.
OWL regularly accepts work experience and veterinary students from various provinces and even from other countries. The students obtain practical skills in raptor rehabilitation, including raptor medical care, handling, and husbandry.
The purposes of the society:
- To provide care and rehabilitation to injured and orphaned raptors with priority given to protected species
- To provide educational activities incidental to the above
- To gather data on wildlife and release the information to the public
- To establish and maintain breeder programs for protected wildlife, for the purpose of releasing the young to the wild