Species Specific Issues

Abandoned Domestic Rabbits

Rabbits are the third most abandoned pet next to dogs and cats. Domestic rabbits are not fit or capable of surviving in the wild. If you have found a loose or abandoned domestic rabbit, keep it contained and contact your local humane society or animal shelter.

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Bats

Bats enter a torpid state in the colder months, they are not true hibernators because they will become more active on warmer days. Finding bats indoors during the winter is not uncommon, but they cannot be released outside. There are no food sources for them and they will quickly perish trying to stay warm outside in the winter.


Avoid direct contact; use thick gloves, cardboard or a blanket to move and secure if necessary.


Bats cannot take flight from the ground, and need to be hanging from a vertical structure to take off.


If you find a bat indoors during the winter, contact an Authorized Wildlife Custodian equipped to accept bats immediatly.

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Bears

For information about Ontario’s native bear species, how to prevent and report encounters with black bears and learn who to contact visit the MNRF and Bear with Us

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Feral Cats

For information and assistance with stray and feral cats, contact your municipal animal control or humane society.

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Opossum

North Americans only marsupial. When confronted they may stand motionless with their mouth open, drooling and teeth exposed to predators.


They may also drop ‘dead’ on their side for minutes or occasionally even hours when they feel threatened.

They will release a noxious oder when they do this to both appear and smell dead.


Babies latch onto nipples within their mothers pouch, and can survive up to 18 hours after her death. Dead opossums should be inspected for a pouch with babies and if found immediately brought into care, still attached to mom.


Lone and immature opossum babies cannot wait to be reunited with mom, but they are independent when roughly the size of a large grapefruit or football. IF you are unsure about a small opossum, take pictures and contact us or an Authorized Wildlife Custodian right away.

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Pigeons

Although Rock Pigeons are quite successful and prolific in many parts of North America, they are not a native species and are actually descendants of domesticated racing or utility birds. Most Pigeons are feral with no owners, but if you have spotted a pigeon in distress with a band on its leg, you will need to contact the owner using the band number. Please visit the Canadian Racing Pigeon Union for more information.

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Turtles

For information about Ontario’s 8 native turtle species and how to help them, visit the Ontario Turtle Conservation Centre.

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Wild Canines

For information on Ontario's native canines (fox, coyote, wolf), the threats they face from increased urbanization, and support with community coexistence, please visit Coyote Watch Canada

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Wild Pigs

Wild pigs in Ontario are released or feral domestic pigs and Eurasian boar. They are incredibly destructive to our native ecosystems and are capable of prolific reproduction as a result of their domesticated history. Sightings of wild pigs should be reported to the Ministry:

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