Contributing Supplies and Food

Support ideas for friends of all ages

Non-monetary gifts support the work we do every day.

Family with large food donation

In addition to monetary contributions, the Wildlife Center gratefully accepts donations of materials, supplies, and food to help us treat and return animals to the wild. Whether you are holding a donation drive for your school or office, looking to do some extra shopping for wildlife at the Center, or cleaning out your closets, we’ll accept a variety of cleaning, feeding, and housing supplies as well as office products. 

Before bringing a large number of donated items (particularly sheets and towels) please email us first at wildlife@wildlifecenter.org. We have limited linen storage at the Center.

Please note: We cannot accept nutritional drinks (Ensure, Boost, Equate, etc), bird cages, metal dog crates, or bedspreads.

Supplies and Food Needs

We’d love to accept:

Cleaning Supplies
  • Antibacterial liquid soap
  • Paper towels
  • Tissues (no lotion)
  • Toilet paper
  • Bleach
  • Brass high-pressure hose nozzles
  • Dawn dishwashing liquid (blue)
  • Kitchen-size or larger trash bags
  • Scrub brushes
  • Sponges
  • Contractor bags
Feeding Supplies
  • Eggs
  • Baby rice cereal
  • Baby food (fruit and meat)
  • Canned dog food
  • Dry cat food (high-quality)
  • Dry dog food (high-quality, high-protein)
  • Exact bird food
  • Peanut butter
  • Birdseed
  • Native nuts (acorn, hickory, husked walnuts)
  • 1 mL and 3 mL syringes

Seasonal Needs

We have an especially urgent need in the fall months for food for our growing bear cubs. Learn more at Collecting Nuts for Wildlife.

During the summer, our needs include leafy woody plants for our fawns to browse. See more at Browse for Fawns.

Housing Supplies
  • Timothy Hay
  • Pine shavings
  • Airline kennels (all sizes)
  • Aquariums (five or ten gallon)
  • Heating pads (with no auto shut-off)
  • Linens: sheets, large towels, infant fleece blankets, pillowcases (no holes)
  • Shredded paper(no plastic, please!)
  • Straw
  • Astroturf doormats or rolls
  • Reptile bark
  • Stuffed animals (not bead-filled)
  • Wood Wool bales (Excelsior)
  • Reptile cage hydrometers
  • Reptile cage thermometers
Miscellaneous
  • Masking tape
  • Colorful duct tape
  • Butterfly nets
  • Tube socks
  • Sharpie markers
  • Extension cords (outdoor grade)
  • Kitchen/Postal scales (digital)
  • Kitchen shears
  • High-quality water hoses
  • Ink pens
  • Plastic cable ties / zip cords (regular and reusable)
  • Rubbermaid 10+ gallon plastic tubs
  • Work gloves
  • Ziploc bags (gallon or two-gallon size)
  • Paper for copier (including colored paper)
  • Colorful nail polish (good condition)
  • Rechargeable batteries (AA and AAA sizes)

We’ll also accept gift certificates to the following locations: Amazon, Chewy, Kroger, RodentPro, Fox Valley Animal Nutrition, and Mazuri.

DIY Projects and Supplies

The Wildlife Center also needs some specific supplies that are hand-crafted. Plans and instructions for several projects are included below.

Cutting and Taping Tail Guards

Making Tail Guards

Tail guards help protect raptor tail feathers during hospitalization when critically injured birds need to be housed in small crates or enclosures. These stiff plastic coverings, created from a specific plastic file folder, provide waterproof protection and prevent breakage in the birds’ feathers during the recovery process. 

Current need: BADO, GHOW, and BAEA tail guards.

Sewing Raptor Wrappers

Making Raptor Wrappers

Raptor wrappers are useful tools to quickly contain raptors for weighing at the Wildlife Center, making the weighing process safer for both birds and humans.

Current need: We could use more XXL for raptors at the Center, and are happy to share extras with other wildlife rehabilitators. 

Sewing Booties

Making Bird Boots

These foot wraps for pelagic birds help protect sensitive feet when recovering patients need to be “dry docked” at night or while healing.

Current need: None at this time. 

Sewing Program Crate Covers

Making Crate Covers

Every time an education ambassador animal participates in an on-site or off-site program, the animal travels in a crate. A crate cover provides the animal with privacy as it travels; the covers also add to the professional look of the Wildlife Center outreach team.  Please contact the outreach team at edu@wildlifecenter.org to discuss current needs, supplies, and plans!

Making Reptariums

Making Reptariums

Reptariums are used daily at the Wildlife Center for housing injured and young songbirds. While these soft-sided mesh enclosures can be purchased through reptile supply vendors, they can also be created by those with sewing skills!

Current need: Yes, please!