In 2019, the Hawai‘i wildlife center cared for 394 patients in our facility and through the O‘ahu Seabird Aid Program. Patients were from O‘ahu, Hawai‘i, Maui, Lāna‘i, and Kaua‘i.
Of these 394 patients, 28 unique species were represented. Click for more details.
O‘AHU SEABIRD AID (OSA)
The goal of the OSA Program is to enable quick response to the high number of downed seabirds on O‘ahu during the fallout season each year.
Our 2019 Season was Nov. 16 – Dec. 12. During this time 229 birds were rescued. 88% of all released OSA birds were in care for 24 hours or less.
Funding support for the 2019 season was provided by the Dept. of Land and Natural Resources Div. of Forestry and Wildlife and Hawaiian Electric. In-kind support provided by Feather and Fur Animal Hospital, Honolulu Zoo, DOFAW Makiki Heights, US Coast Guard Aux. Kinuko Noborikawa, OSA volunteers, Wheels for Wildlife volunteers, and interns.
Patient Care Highlights
Many patients have unique and interesting stories. Here are just a few that stood out in 2019.
This endangered Hawaiian hoary bat was admitted on August 17. The bat was hit by a wind turbine and because the staff at the site
were proactive in their monitoring efforts for downed wildlife, the bat was discovered in time to be rescued and sent to our facility for care. This shows that not all wildlife encounters with wind turbines are automatically a fatality. The patient had a fractured scapula, which was preventing him from flying. As the fracture healed, he started doing short flights and our staff started physical therapy. He stayed in care for about two months before he was released on October 6. He was banded by the U.S. Geological Survey before he was released.
This Hawaiian Owl was caught in a hit and run on May 9. Luckily, a good samaritan saw it happened, pulled over and immediately called
for help. We were able to connect the rescuer with Division of Forestry and Wildlife staff that were able to locate the bird and bring her to our facility. The bird suffered a serious wing fracture that was immediately wrapped and let heal without needing surgery. It took months of
intensive treatment, monitoring, medications, physical therapy, and
enrichment to get the owl back to health and using her wing properly. The patient was released on August 28.
Snow Goose (19-122)
This patient was a staff favorite as well as an extremely challenging medical case. The bird was found on O‘ahu in late October with a leg fracture and a variety of other health issues. The fracture was set with a pin and fixator by our partners at Feather and Fur Animal Hospital before being sent to our facility. When the bird first arrived he was in poor body condition, had blood in his feces as well as lung issues (in addition to his fractured leg). The patient was in isolation for a few weeks and had to be tube-fed 3-4 times a day during that time. Despite these issues, he was a fighter and made it through. He was in care for over a month before being sent back to O‘ahu for pin removal. The surgery was a success and he was released at Kaena Point in mid-December.
Wildlife Rescue Calls
In 2019 we received 673 calls. Most calls came from the main Hawaiian Islands, but we also answered calls from the mainland as well as remote islands.
Here’s the breakdown of 2019 rescue calls:
EDUCATION AND OUTREACH
Events that HWC was a part of in 2019 included the Wiliwili Festival, Science Discovery Day at Bishop Museum, Earth Day at the Honolulu Zoo, STEM-Fest, the Hawai‘i Conservation Conference and more!
In 2019, we welcomed a wide range of students, from a Waimea Preschool to a Women’s Leadership group led by the University of Washington and a Wildlife Sciences class from the University of Hawai‘i Hilo.
Internship and Volunteer Program
As a small staff of five, we rely heavily on our interns and volunteers to maintain our wildlife program, keep on top of patient housekeeping, transport patients, and more. In 2019, HWC interns and volunteers contributed a total of 2,669 hours of volunteer work!
Here’s how that number breaks down:
Wildlife Care and Husbandry
Wheels for Wildlife Transport
Wings for Wildlife Transport
Education and Outreach
TOTAL Volunteer Hours