Lindsay Wildlife Rehabilitation Volunteer Opportunities

Lindsay Wildlife Experience

Lindsay Wildlife Experience, a natural history, environmental education, and wildlife rehabilitation center located in Walnut Creek, California, connects people with wildlife to inspire responsibility and respect for the world we share. Founded in 1955, Lindsay houses a collection of live, native California animals, an Exhibit Hall with hands-on discovery activities for children and changing natural history exhibits, and a wildlife rehabilitation hospital. We are licensed by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife and the US Fish and Wildlife Service. With a caseload of more than 5,500 native wild animals each year, we are one of the oldest and largest rehabilitation centers in the nation.

The goal of Lindsay’s wildlife hospital, started in 1970, is to rehabilitate and return injured and orphaned native wild animals back to their natural habitats. To give them a chance for survival after release, our patients are kept as wild as possible. Animals are handled only when necessary for feeding, cleaning, and medical care; infant animals are raised with their own species and are not socialized by humans. Wildlife rehabilitation combines aspects of veterinary medicine, animal husbandry, and biology/natural history to provide rehabilitation care specific to each native species. (Lindsay currently sees about 100 species commonly or semi-commonly, with about 100 additional species seen infrequently.)

The Lindsay Wildlife Experiences is located at:

1931 First Avenue

Walnut Creek, CA 94597

(925) 935-1978


General Volunteer Information - COVID Edition

Thank you for your interest in becoming a volunteer at Lindsay Wildlife Experience. Due to COVID-19 precautions our volunteer opportunities change depending on current public health recommendations. A description of the on-site and off-site positions can be found in the sections below. (Peak Season is generally April 1 - September 15.)

For further information on any of the positions described below, please fill out this form:

or contact the Hospital Volunteer Manager, Chris Beard,

You will be contacted as soon as we have a COVID-safe process to start orienting and training new volunteers and interns.


Wildlife Rehabilitation Shift Volunteers and Other On-Site Opportunities

Hospital: Clinic-Wide

Shift Volunteer

  • Duties: Primary care-giver for hospital patients (standard hospital shift duties), husbandry (diet preparation, feeding, enclosure cleaning), support (laundry, empty enclosure cleaning), assisting technicians with medical procedures (holding patients, preparing and administering meds).

  • Schedule: 8-hour , or 4-5 hour (am or pm) shifts, on one or multiple days. We have a few open slots for new volunteers working inside the hospital. Currently, we have one open slot for training a new volunteer per shift.

Hospital: Socially Distanced Support

There are some socially-distanced positions on-site. Volunteers that fill these positions perform their tasks in a socially-distanced area, such as in a separate room, with no close interaction with other personnel.

Kitchen/Dry Foods Storage (KDFS)

  • Duties: Dishes (wash, run sanitizer, store after dry), prepare additional new diets for new patients, start preparation of the afternoon diets, prepare general-use diet components (wet kibble mix, HBE, bird salads). There will also be some duties in Dry Foods Storage, such as bagging milk replacers and diet kits for homecare, and assembling the items on homecare supply lists.

  • Schedule: 10 am - 2 pm, starting just after morning feedings, one or multiple days.


  • Duties: Standard laundry duties (wash, dry, fold, store), as well as small-enclosure cleaning (mainly Port-A-Pets and incubators).

  • Schedule: 2 - 6 pm, one or multiple days.


Wildlife Rehabilitation Off-Site Volunteer Opportunities

Primary off-site rehabilitation volunteer opportunities include:

    • Satellite Care: home care of various species, (baby and adult: birds, mammals, herps) as long as you have a suitable space and pass evaluation and training by a Species Team.

    • Hotline: our main avenue of information to the public regarding coexistince with our native wildlife. The Hotline answers inquiries from the public by phone and email.

      • Hotline shifts are 9 am - 1 pm or 1 pm - 5 pm to cover patient intake hours. However, other schedules can be arranged as Hotline actvities are home-based.

Other off-site opportunities:

    • Aviary/enclosure construction and cage repair

    • Data entry and assistance with analysis

    • Transport and Release teams

    • Graphic Design, help with design of educational displays, recruiting and wildlife information flyers

    • Video production, we could use help producing training videos for hospital volunteers and staff


Veterinary Externships and Research Collaborations

Currently we still offer research colaborations for students working on degree programs, and veterinary externships. Below is a description of the Veterinary/Technician Student Externship Program:

If you are interested in an externship or a research collaboration, please contact our Lead Wildlife Veterinarian, Krystal Woo, at


Wildlife Rehabilitation Intern Program

At this time, due to COVID-19 personnel restrictions, we are unable to offer a 2021 Intern Program.

This may change at a later time. If you would like to receive updates regarding the Intern Program please indicate your interest on the Volunteer Interest Form below.

Below is a description of the proposed 2020 Intern Program, so you can get an idea what we had planned. The 2020 program was also cancelled due to COVID-19.

To receive updates regarding the Intern Program please fill out this form:

or contact the Hospital Volunteer Manager, Chris Beard,


Proposed 2020 Intern Program - Cancelled due to COVID-19 precautions

The unpaid internship program offers an unparalleled opportunity for hands-on experience with care and treatment of injured or orphaned native California birds, mammals, reptiles, and amphibians. Working in conjunction with over 300 volunteers, interns are given the opportunity to learn about all aspects of wildlife rehabilitation with hands-on experiences, and to educate the public on wildlife-related subjects.

There are three separate 12-week Intern Program sessions during the 2020 Peak Season:

    • March 29 – June 20

    • May 24 – Aug. 15, oriented toward college semester-system schedules

    • June 21 – Sept. 12, oriented toward college quarter-system schedules

The program requires completion of:

    • A minimum of 300 Intern Program hours during one of the 12-week sessions. Schedule is usually...

        • 24 hours per week (three 8-hour shifts per week for the 12 weeks, usually 2 weekday shifts and one weekend day shift per week)

        • Shifts are usually 8:00 am - 4:00 pm or 2:00 pm - 10:00 pm

        • Includes day, evening, weekend, and holiday work

        • Alternate scheduling, including an extended timeframe into the next session, may be available by prior arrangement

    • All required training, including a weekly classroom session (that may require attendance on a non-shift day)

    • A wildlife rehabilitation Intern Project (projects may include data entry/analysis, development/revision of written protocols, developing case studies, or assisting in educational material preparation)

Upon successful completion of a Peak Season program session, you may apply to continue into the next session. During a subsequent session you would be able to gain additional, advanced skills, and could be scheduled to work directly with a staff veterinarian. There is also opportunity to extend intern activities into the Fall/Winter Season.

A complete description of the current program, including duties, requirements, and application instructions, is available through this link:

    • Intern Program Description - New information will be linked when the program resumes