Wildlife Rehabilitator Permit
General Info - Statewide Permit
A permit issued by Maryland Department of Natural Resources to provide care and treatment for the rehabilitation and release back to the wild of orphaned, sick or injured wildlife. There are two classes of permits: a Master Wildlife Rehabilitator and an Apprentice Rehabilitator. In order to become a Master Rehabilitator, one must serve as an apprentice for at least 2 years.
Among the requirements for this permit are proof of adequate training in the capture, handling and care of wildlife. Also the applicant must have facilities, owned or leased, which are of sufficient size and design to properly maintain the permitted wildlife in captivity. Part of the permit process will be the designation of the species and numbers of wildlife that will be authorized to be possessed at any given time.
Obtaining the Permit
Ready to get your permit? - Steps, Requirements, and Documents
Must be 18 years or older.
Meet the requirements of Regulation 08.03.12.04.
Provide the name, address, and telephone number of the applicant's sponsor.
Agree to meet the educational requirements described in Regulation 08.03.12.06 during the 2-year apprentice period.
Agree to provide 200 documented hours of physical care for sick, injured, or orphaned wildlife under the direct supervision of a master rehabilitator during a 2-year period beginning with the date the applicant files the application package.
Demonstrate reasonable experience and skill in handling and caring for wild animals by:
(a) Holding a degree in veterinary medicine, veterinary technology, or animal science; or
(b) Providing documentation that the person has provided physical care for animals under the authority of a permit allowing a person to rehabilitate wildlife; and
(c) Sign an affidavit which states an agreement to abide by this chapter and all State and federal wildlife laws and regulations.
Must have facilities, owned or leased, which are of sufficient size and design to properly maintain the permitted wildlife in captivity.
Apply for the Permit
Ready to apply?
Download the application .PDF file
Maintaining Your Permit
Renewal and maintenance -
Maintaining your Permit (aka Related forms/requirements to maintain Permit/stay in good standing)
A Wildlife Rehabilitator shall maintain records on forms provided by the Department. The records shall reflect:
(1) The species of animal received;
(2) When the animal was received and where it was obtained;
(3) Disposition of the animal; and
(4) If an animal was released, where the animal was released.
The records shall be updated within 24 hours of the receipt or disposition of an animal.
For each license period, a Master Wildlife Rehabilitator shall complete 12 hours of continuing education classes or research approved by the Department. The Department shall provide a list of approved activities offered through state or national rehabilitation organizations, veterinary experts in a specialized field, or Master Rehabilitators to complete this requirement.
What laws and regulations give Department of Natural Resources the legal authority to issue this approval?