MissionThe Iowa Wildlife Center provides professional wildlife rescue, medical treatment and rehabilitation of native wildlife in central Iowa; teaches about wildlife and habitat stewardship; and provides wildlife assistance skills training.
We can't do all of this right now. After all, we must spend time building support and building the IWC campus. However, in these early years, we continue to build our programs, continually striving to fulfill our mission.
Why on Earth?
Most dogs and cats have responsible owners who provide safe homes, veterinarians who watch over their health and animal shelters that provide housing and care when they need it, but where can wild animals find such food, care and comfort? Every year thousands of birds and other animals in Iowa are orphaned, injured, sickened or displaced - often due to human activity. Windows, vehicles, cats, toxins, power lines, and other "unnatural" dangers take their toll, as does conversion of native habitat for human use -- all of this along with natural events such as violent storms.
© Carl Kurtz
A great number of Iowans care about our wildlife and protecting their habitats. Many who find injured or displaced creatures would also like to give them a chance to be free and wild again. But to whom do they turn?
A healing place
The Iowa Wildlife Center (IWC) will focus on the place where humans and wildlife connect by providing wildlife rescue, rehabilitation and research for central Iowa that is based on science, ethics and humane care. The Iowa Wildlife Center will offer statewide wildlife assistance skills training for conservation professionals and volunteers and provide wildlife education to all Iowans.
IWC was born thanks to the generosity and foresight of many committed people. The Alma Natura Trust proposed and nurtured the original concept and provided significant funding. Landowners Don Adams and Nan Bonfils made the site available at a bargain price. We are off to a wonderful start with committed people and organizations giving us a lift as we create a truly remarkable wildlife rehabilitation and education center. Won't you join us in the adventure? It is through your belief in this project that we will build the foundation of a sustainable wildlife center.
The board, staff and volunteers of IWC will serve the wildlife and people of Central Iowa and beyond through healing - healing wild lives, wild land and perhaps the human spirit. IWC will respond to public concern about imperiled wildlife and related habitat issues while filling important niches among existing wildlife programs.
The Iowa Wildlife Center will provide Iowans with several services.
- The Center will focus on the medical treatment, rehabilitation, conditioning and release primarily of native wildlife, with a special focus on native birds, bats, reptiles, amphibians and mammals of conservation concern.
- IWC will offer professional wildlife rescue in central Iowa - if we determine that the animal does need to be rescued and that you cannot safely rescue it yourself, we will either send our own staff or try to locate someone near you qualified to capture the animal.
- IWC will work cooperatively with existing wildlife rehabilitation and education programs, strengthening each of our missions by doing so. Gladys Black, right, was a mentor to many early Iowa conservation professionals. Known as "Mother of Wildlife Rehabilitation" to some and "Bird Lady" to others, she was a central figure in the wildlife rehabilitation and education communities in the 1960s and '70s. IWC honors her dedication to both fields with our mission and cooperative work.
- The Iowa Wildlife Center's work will be guided by several documents, including the following: the Minimum Standards for Wildlife Rehabilitation, a National Wildlife Rehabilitators Association and International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council cooperative project; A Wildlife Rehabilitator's Code of Ethics; A Wildlife Educator's Code of Ethics; and the Iowa Wildlife Action Plan, a "comprehensive and workable plan designed to aid all wildlife."