Wildlife Rehabilitation Ireland is an umbrella organisation promoting wildlife rehabilitation & supporting the rehabiliators who work in this field in Ireland.
The wildlife situation in Ireland is unusual and unfortunate in so far as there is no single organisation representing all types of wildlife rescue and rehabilitation. There are various individuals and a few organisations around the country that either rescue specific species or rehabilitate whatever casualties come their way. These individuals receive no financial support and had no support network among themselves.
There was therefore a great need and opportunity to develop a more coordinated approach to, and a higher profile for wildlife and wildlife rehabilitation in Ireland. Wildlife Rehabilitation Ireland (WRI) was established to do just this.
WRI is a member of the Irish Environmental Network (IEN) and through the IEN receives core funding from the Department of Communication Climate Action and Environment.
Wildlife Hospital Address: WRI Wildlife Hospital, Tara Na Ri, Garlow Cross, Navan, Co Meath C15 V9TW)
Wildlife Rehabilitation Ireland is a company limited by guarantee not having a share capital
Registered in Dublin, Ireland. Office: 10 High Meadows, Duleek, Co Meath.
Company No. 555237 | Chy No. 20991 | Registered Charity No. 20142551
and improve wildlife welfare and conservation in Ireland
Formation of Wildlife Rehabilitation Ireland website
WRI has developed a website which offers rehabilitation guidelines, standardised wildlife casualty and volunteer forms for rehabilitation establishments, wildlife career options, publications and further education – all of which aim to facilitate individuals actively involved in rehabilitation and/or conservation.
Irish Wildlife Matters website
WRI produced the wildlife first aid website ‘Irish Wildlife Matters’ (IWM) which was launched in May 2010. Its purpose is to address the lack of easily accessible information on Irish wildlife rescue and first aid. IWM provides an easily accessible, online overview of the rescue methods, medical treatment, rehabilitation and release procedures for the most common seen species of Irish wildlife casualties.
Irish Wildlife Rehabilitation Conferences
In 2010 WRI ran the first Wildlife Rehabilitation Conference in Ireland. The conference brought together speakers from countries more advanced in their wildlife management for talks and practical sessions. The Conference generated huge interest and positive feedback. Following the success of the 2010 conference WRI hosted a wildlife conference in 2011, 2012, and an even more popular Wildlife Crime Conference in 2013 and 2015.
Irish Wildlife Crime Conferences
The inaugural 2013 Wildlife Crime Conference was convened to discuss wildlife crime in a comprehensive all-island context and, as a result, proved to be a historic milestone in Irish wildlife protection. It provided a unique opportunity for government agencies, NGOs, professional bodies, voluntary groups and individuals to share their experience and expertise in this field. The conference was enthusiastically received by all sectors of wildlife protection in Ireland. In September 2015 WRI hosted the second Irish Wildlife Crime Conference.
IWRC’s ‘Basic Wildlife Rehabilitation Course’
The International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council (IWRC) is the leading developer of professional training for wildlife care providers internationally. In 2011 the IWRC teamed up with WRI to provide a unique opportunity for Irish people to participate in the IWRC’s Basic Wildlife Rehabilitation Course. The training course concentrated specifically on the theory and practice of wildlife rehab.
Post Release Monitoring – Rehabilitated Pine Martens
Hundreds of rehabilitated wildlife casualties and orphans are released back to the wild each year. Release is often considered to be the measure of success and yet very little is known about the post-release survival of rehabilitated wildlife.
Otter rehabilitation and release project
In autumn 2012 WRI facilitated the return and soft release of an Irish otter that was rehabilitated in Scotland at the International Otter Survival Fund’s (IOSF) facilities on the Isle of Skye.
Post Release Monitoring – Swan ringing project
A testament to the beneficial effect of the Wildlife Rehabilitation Conferences is the enthusiasm and inspiration they generate in people. Dan is one example of this; he is a wildlife rehabilitator from Kildare who approached WRI in 2013 for assistance with a post release monitoring project proposal. Dan frequently takes in swans for rehabilitation and wanted to monitor their progress after their release. The swans are mainly from the locality and there are many dedicated local ornithologists willing to look out for, and report swan sightings.
Data Collection – Wildlife Health Survey – vets
In 2013 WRI carried out the first Irish Wildlife Health Survey with the help of veterinary practices throughout Ireland. The survey formed part of ongoing research into wildlife health, in conjunction with academic institutions and voluntary organisations, and provided significant data to allow for a better picture of any emerging infectious diseases which could have potential disastrous consequences for animal production and wildlife in Ireland.
Data Collection – Wildlife Casualty Survey – rehabilitators
Additionally in 2013, WRI conducted the first survey amongst wildlife rehabilitators in Ireland to ascertain the quantity of casualties they have cared for, the conditions they suffered from, and the outcome of these cases.
Wildlife inclusion in the veterinary curriculum
In October 2015 WRI delivered a teaching session on wildlife rescue and first aid to sixty veterinary students. This was the first time that wildlife has featured as an option in the veterinary curriculum in University College Dublin, and it now looks set to become a regular part of the exotics electives for UCD students. Details can be found on WRI’s website at www.wri.ie/pages/News-ucd.html
- Promote wildlife rehabilitation
- Encourage standardisation of care
- Support Irish rehabilitators
- Provide continuing professional development opportunities
- Build an Irish Wildlife Rehabilitation & Teaching Hospital
Wildlife Rehabilitation Ireland’s Vision
National Wildlife Rehabilitation & Teaching Hospital
As the public profile of wildlife rescue and rehabilitation rises, so too does the number of wildlife casualties brought to small independent wildlife centres. There is now extreme financial pressure on these individuals given increased demands on increasingly inadequate resources.
The combination of circumstances demands the establishment of a self-sustaining dedicated Wildlife Rehabilitation and Teaching Hospital in order to offer Irish wildlife and Irish people the opportunity to mutually benefit from a solution to this currently unsustainable situation.
Read more about the project by clicking on the link below
Ethos – Education
WRI believes that welfare and conservation are of limited long term benefit without education. For that reason WRI feel strongly about having an educational element to the Hospital.
In order to provide future employment opportunities as well as develop individuals’ respect for wildlife
and the understand of the necessity of biodiversity for our own health and that of our planet, WRI will be providing
the individuals who work with the animals the option to work towards achieving a certified animal care qualification which
could open doors to jobs such as; veterinary nursing, grooming, animal training, wildlife conservation etc.