Helping Conserve and Preserve Nature

PVAS participates in a variety of conservation activities throughout its service area.  

Wildlife Rescue - What To Do

While PVAS does not rehabilitate birds or wildlife, we do have a wildlife rescue coordinator, volunteer Diana Mullis, who can give advice over the phone and help coordinate transportation of wildlife to a rehabilitation facility or certified veterinarian.

Before you call, here is some information that may help:

Baby Deer:
Fawns should be left alone. The best thing you can do for it is to leave it where you find it. Mother deer feed babies at dawn and dusk, but the babies are left alone for the day. The mother knows exactly where to find its baby at the end of the day. If you have already moved the fawn, you should take it back as close as possible to where you found it and let it be. The mother’s instinct to nurse the baby will outweigh its concern over any remaining human smells. The mother will return in the evening and will find the fawn by sight, smell, and sound.
Baby bunnies or other small mammals:
Truly the best thing you can do if you find any of these animals is to leave them where you find them. If a nest is disturbed by a lawn mower or other factor, you can place them back in the nest and the parent will likely return and move them to safety.
Baby birds:
Put baby birds back in the nest whenever possible. Birds do not have a strong sense of smell, so the smell of your hand will not interfere with the parents’ care for the bird.  If the bird is fully feathered and on the ground, it may be fledging. The parent is likely nearby “coaching” and feeding the young bird. Keep cats and dogs indoors until the bird leaves the area.  (

Sick/Injured Bird of Prey (Hawks, Eagles, Falcons, Owls):
These birds have extremely sharp beaks and talons and can easily injure you. If you must catch an injured raptor, the best way is to slowly approach it from behind and throw a blanket or jacket over it to calm it down. Make sure you are wearing heavy leather gloves and grab the bird's legs from behind, above the talons. Make sure to grab both feet at the same time. If only one foot is grabbed, it will quickly use its free talons to grab whatever is close, such as your arm. Make sure your face is far from striking distance of its powerful beak. Remember, the bird thinks you are a predator and may be fighting for its life. Wrap it up in the fabric making sure it can still breathe, and gently move it to a box and place in a cool location. Call Diana Mullis or a wildlife rehabilitator as soon as possible to get further instructions. 

If you still have questions or need assistance after reading the information above contact:

PVAS Wildlife Rescue Coordinator, Diana Mullis (volunteer)
Phone: 304-754-3753   • E-mail:

Other contacts:

Conservation Action Alerts:
Sign Up for Audubon's Action Network

Electronic Field Guides & other Natural History Resources:
Nature Images & Sounds

Places to Go! Coming Soon.

           © 2016 Potomac Valley Audubon Society

              P.O. Box 578 • Shepherdstown, West Virginia 25443
              phone // 304-676-3397

Yankauer Nature Preserve (Berkeley County)
Eidolon Nature Preserve (Morgan County)
Stauffer's Marsh (Berkeley County)
Cool Spring Nature Preserve (Jefferson County)

Kristin Alexander, Executive Director //   304-676-3397

Kimberly Baldwin, Program Director //

Katelyn "KC" Walters, Conservation and Land Manager // 304-283-7319

Krista Hawley, Adult Program Coordinator
// 703-303-1026

Amy Moore, Cool Spring Preserve Manager and Naturalist // 240-818-4714
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