Mission Statement:

We support and advocate for wildlife through:

 Rehabilitation, Education, Community Outreach, and Partnerships in order to promote sustainable and healthy eco-systems in Napa County for the present and future generations

What We Do:

raccoon juvenile

Napa Wildlife Rescue (NWR) is the only organization in Napa County that is permitted to rescue, rehabilitate and release wildlife back to the Napa wild.  NWR operates under permits from the U.S. Department of Fish and Wildlife and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.  NWR accepts all species of Napa County wildlife that are orphaned, injured or sick, except for some large game animals e.g. bears, lions, and full-grown deer (we do rescue and care for fawns).  If they are orphaned, we raise them.  If they are sick or injured, we heal them. Throughout the year, hundreds of bird, raptor and mammal species are returned to the wild following the specialized care of NWR’s staff and volunteers. Our average number of intakes annually is approximately 1200 patients.  2020 is currently trending to exceed previous years by as much as 20%.  We have already passed the 1200 mark in 2020 and still have 4 months to go.

Our process begins when members of the public inform us of wildlife they believe to be in distress and needing help.  Ideally this is a phone call to our Hawkline (707 224-Hawk), which is manned 7 days a week.  Hawkline volunteers assess the situation remotely by species, behavior, visible evidence of injuries, etc. to determine the next steps.  Sometimes the instruction is to leave animals that are actually exhibiting normal behavior (whether it seems so to humans or not) where they are.  Other times we dispatch rescuers or instruct the finder how to handle the animal for transport to our intake center at Silverado Veterinary Hospital. Trained NWR volunteers check the intake center for animals (three times a day in high season and once a day in low season) and either transport patients to the Clinic or contact the appropriate home care person for the assessment of the patient.  In the future, intake will be augmented with our new Middle Avenue location when it comes online .  After rehabilitative care, healthy animals are released back into their native habitats in accordance with strict species-specific release criteria.

In addition to our rehabilitation efforts, NWR has grown significantly in our school and community outreach in the last 3 years.  These programs are aimed at:

  • Building wildlife appreciation and prevention – through awareness of human activities that might help wildlife or put it at risk.
  • Promoting the Hawkline and NWR as the places to go when help is needed.
  • Building wonder and love for wildlife, particularly in the schools, which we hope will develop into lasting support for Napa’s wildlife community
  • Attracting new volunteers.

Our educational programs are often enhanced by the presence of our two Ambassador Animals (an Opossum and a Red-tailed hawk), in addition to compelling photographic and video displays, engaging signage and informative presentations.  We created a new curriculum in 2019 based on the scientific principles of learning, which was presented free and in person to 790 school children in 2019 and 516 in 2020 before the program was halted due to virus-related closures.


Napa Wildlife Rescue was founded in 1991 as a nonprofit corporation
under the direction of local veterinarian Shirley Harmon. Napa Wildlife Rescue is licensed through the California
 Department of Fish and Wildlife to possess and provide temporary care for sick, orphaned, or injured 
California wildlife pursuant to Section 679, Title 14, Code of Regulations (CCR). Additionally, we are permitted through the US Department of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife Division to rehabilitate migratory birds.

Board of Directors:

John Comisky – President

Carol Poole Vice President

Debra Brown – Treasurer

Linda Howard – Secretary

Eve-Ann Wilkes – Board Member

Tom Clark – Board Member

Phyllis Hunt – Board Member

Elizabeth Monk – Board Member

Lee Loban – Board Member

We invite you to join us in helping make the center a reality. For more information on becoming a volunteer, please call (707) 685-5411 or email the Wildlife Administrator at wildlifeadmin@napawildliferescue.org

Nest of newborn finches.

Virginia Opossum are fascinating—they are the only marsupial (pouched) animals in North America.

Virginia Opossum are fascinating—they are the only marsupial (pouched) animals in North America.

I absolutely LOVE you all at Napa Wildlife!! Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU ALL!! 💋💋

Regina M. Lutz

Thank you for all you do. The animals are so worthy of any care they are provided. Harm to the animals is one of the worst parts of our fire season.

Terri Wallacker

You ROCK for these wild ones! Thanx so much much for all you do!

Laurie J Ehlers