Wildlife Rescue Center

Rescate wildlife Rescue center is the largest wildlife rescue center in Central America, receiving more the 3000 wild animals a year. Our main goal is rehabilitate and release the animals back into their natural habitat. We are 100% non for profit, with the proceeds of your entrance fees going right back into the work that we do!

 

Along with the sanctuary, we also have the only hospital for wildlife in the country, a breeding program for endangered species, an education program and release sites that are private reserves of over 800 hectors of reforested areas! Our private reserves are used for releases sites, reforestation programs, in which we can restore and protect Costa Ricas natural biodiversity.

What to Do if You Find a Wild Animal in need?

If you encounter a baby wild animal, the best course of action is to leave it where you found it. Its parents are likely nearby and will continue to care for it. If you can locate the nest, gently place the baby back with as little interaction as possible. Only if you are certain the parents are deceased, the baby is abandoned, or it’s injured should you contact SINAC or MINAE. They can ensure it is taken to a responsible rescue center.

If you are aware of a wild animal being kept as a pet or in poor conditions, you can report it anonymously by calling #1192 or visiting this webpage:
https://www.sitada.go.cr/denunciaspublico/

If you have exhausted these options or need further guidance on animals, feel free to reach out to us via WhatsApp at +506 6058 3898.

Receiving wildlife at Rescate

Where are the animals getting recieved from?

All animals brought to us pass through our main entrance. There, we warmly welcome both you and the animal, ready to initiate our dedicated process. The animal is then registered through a simple form, with specific questions aimed at understanding its history, health condition, and the urgency of its case. If you’re the kind-hearted individual bringing in an animal, you also have the option to make a voluntary donation for its care and medication.

 

From this point forward, we take the reins and ensure that your new animal friend receives the utmost care and attention.

What happens after the animal is received?

After the animal is received and registered, our Veterinary Team springs into action. Depending on the severity of its injury or condition, they promptly transport it from the entrance to our Wildlife Veterinary Hospital and Clinic. Here, the animal undergoes a general medical health check, or in emergency situations, receives immediate surgical intervention.

Find out what happens next with the animal at our Hospital and Rehabilitation Center.

Amount of wild animals received in the year from 2018-2022

Bar chart showing progressive data increase over time

Animals we receive the most

Pie chart showing the percentage of different animal types at the wildlife rescue center

Birds are one of the most frequently encountered wildlife species, and sometimes, our well-intentioned actions lead to their separation from their natural habitat. During the fledgling season, it’s quite common for young birds to venture out of their nests in their first flight attempts. Often, humans with the best of intentions come across these fledglings on the ground and take them either into their homes or to a wildlife rescue center. However, in many cases, these actions unintentionally result in the separation of the young bird from its parents. It’s important to note that the parents of these fledglings continue to care for them and provide guidance until they are capable of flying proficiently. If you encounter a young wild bird on the ground, the most responsible course of action is to simply leave it be, allowing nature to take its course.

Hannah Sollohub

St. George’s, Grenada
5/5

My veterinary internship at Rescate was absolutely incredible! Dr. Isabel and Dr. Sofía made it a great learning experience and allowed me to get invaluable hands on experience. This internship made me realize my passion for wildlife conservation and medicine and is something I will cherish as I continue my path as a veterinary student. I would love to go back because I know I would still learn something new everyday and I hope that so many others get to discover the amazing place that Rescate is. I recommend this internship to everyone pursing an interest in exotic animals, rehabilitation, and Costa Rica’s biodiversity!

Want to learn and have a unique wildlife experience?

What are the reasons why they are in the Rescue Center?

Conservation effort progress indicator showing 45 percent completion
Illegal Posession

The practice of having certain wild animals as pets is illegal in Costa Rica. When such animals are found by officials, they are brought to a sanctuary like ours.

Conservation effort progress indicator showing 23 percent completion
Extraction from Habitat

Or how we like to call it: “kidnapping“ animals. This often happens when people find a baby bird on the ground and think they have to help it.

Conservation effort progress indicator showing 16 percent completion
Injured

Some animals are electrocuted while climbing power lines, get hit by cars, consume non-natural materials, or incur some other kind of injury. Our vets help them heal and recover!

Conservation effort progress indicator showing 5 percent completion
Orphaned

When a wild animal loses their parents before they can take care of themselves, we help give them a natural environment to grow up in and reintroduce them into the wild if they seem likely to thrive.

How are the animals getting to us?

1
By the authorities like SINAC and MINAE
2
People bring them to us because they had them as pets
Find out what happens next with the animal at our Hospital and Rehabilitation Center.

FAQ

Frequently asked questions

What to expect on your visit at Rescate Wildlife.

We are open every day from 9:00am to 5:00pm, every day of the year! You can also find our opening hours HERE.

Yes we have a free private parking lot. Our staff will guide you to a free spot for your car. Find our more about your visit here.

Children are from 2 years old to 12 years old. Below 2 years old are free, and 13 years old would be considered an adult rate. For more information click HERE.

For a regular entrance you do not need to reserve ahead of time, but if you are interested in a guided tour, you do need an online reservation. Here is the link to our reservation platform: TICKETS & TOURS

Yes, there is not problem for you to bring in food to enjoy a snack or a picnic. We ask that you not bring in any alcoholic beverages or BBQ’s.

No, we do not allow pets. We have a lot of animals that are roaming wild, including Iguanas, peacocks and other birds. For the safety of your animals and ours it is not permitted to bring in any pets.

Yes, you can bring in service animals, as long as you have the appropriate documentation and the animals are identified as so.

Yes, we have a restaurant onsite which is open from 9:00am to 5:00pm as well. The restaurant is open to the public, you do not need to visit the sanctuary in order to eat there. Would you like to get more information and see the menu? Click HERE.

Yes, we have free wifi in various parts of the sanctuary, including the main entrance and restaurant. There is not wifi on all of the trails.

No, these are wild animals and we do not permit any interactions with them. Our animals are well looked after and fed a nutritious diet, feeding them can cause health issues, or unwanted or unsafe interactions. Please respect them by keeping your distance. If we find that anyone is feeding or touching the animals we do reserve the right to escort them out of the property. 

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Alajuela, COSTA RICA