Wildlife Hotline: (516) 674-0982
Wildlife Center of Long Island
Wildlife Hotline: (516) 674-0982
***All volunteer positions for 2024 have been filled. Please check back in 2025 for new opportunities.***

Wildlife Rehabilitation Internships

Wildlife Center of Long Island Rehabilitation Interns help to provide care to over two thousand injured, orphaned and sick patients at our hospital each year. In exchange, interns receive professional training, experience and an extensive introduction to the field of wildlife rehabilitation.   

​Our interns work 40 hours per week in four 10-hour shifts. Interns begin their day at 8 AM and end at 6 PM.  All interns work four days per week and will have a set schedule for the internship.  Mandatory training is held on the first weekend of the internship and will allow interns to learn and practice skills before starting on their regular schedules. Additional training is held throughout the internship with all intern training sessions every Wednesday afternoon.   

Pigeon Rescue - Wildlife Center Of Long Island

The internship is split into two parts with one half devoted to the care of neonatal and juvenile animals in our nursery and the other half providing care to our critically injured adult patients. Interns will work alongside our staff rehabilitators to provide the highest quality care for our patients.

Responsibilities will include diet preparation and feeding, enclosure cleaning and maintenance,  habitat and behavioral enrichment, record keeping and observations, providing intense neonatal care to songbirds, mammals and waterfowl, and general hospital cleaning including laundry, dishes, sweeping/mopping and taking out the garbage.

Feeding Injured Baby
Baby Squirrel Rehabilitation

Internship Terms:

  • Internships are unpaid.
  • Housing and transportation are not provided.
  • Interns must attend mandatory training the first day of the internship and be in attendance for the last day of the internship. 
  • Interns will commit fully to their assigned schedule and will make up any anticipated absences.

Intern Qualifications:

We are seeking self-motivated applicants with a sincere interest in Long Island’s wildlife and wildlife rehabilitation.  

  • Demonstrated interest or education in wildlife rehabilitation, conservation biology, ecology, veterinary sciences or zoology
  • Previous animal care experience (domestic animals or wildlife.)
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Attention to detail, initiative and a strong desire to learn
  • Ability to enthusiastically work long hours on your feet in a physically demanding environment
  • Ability to work in a fast-paced environment
  • Sense of humor and strong interpersonal skills

Volunteers for Wildlife is open 7 days a week, 365 days a year. We always have patients in our hospital to care for in addition to our resident education animals that make their home at our center. In the late spring and summer, our staff arrive at our hospital at 7 AM and close up at 7 PM (often later with late in the day admissions.) In the fall, winter and early spring, our hours are 7 AM to 5 PM. While we have scheduled hours, wildlife rehabilitation is an around the clock field and work often extends beyond our workday. We must be ready for a new arrival at any time and examine, treat and set up new arrivals constantly throughout the day.


Our mornings are fast paced and very busy! We start our day every morning bright and early at 7 AM! We turn on all the lights, start the background noise machines and start the laundry. Our staff rehabilitators gather for rounds and we divide responsibilities for the day for our rehabilitators, interns and volunteers. All of of our diurnal (daytime) patients are cared for in the morning. First, we care for our youngest babies and most critical patients and then our older and more stable patients. Every animal will be weighed, fed and have their enclosure cleaned in the morning. We take careful observations on all of our patients, look at how much they are eating, how they are healing and ultimately making sure they are progressing towards release. As you provide care to the patients, you will be keeping an eye on the laundry (putting new loads in to wash/dry/folding as needed), washing dishes and keeping your work space very clean! In the spring and summer months, staff and interns caring for our young babies will be feeding those babies on a cycle of every thirty minutes to every few hours depending on the age and type of animal.​


The middle of the day is often a little slower than our fast paced mornings. This allows us a break to feed ourselves and then we get back to work! Like us, our patients also like to eat! Many of the animals will have their food replenished mid-day and the babies always require more feedings. We spend some time in the middle of the day preparing diets and food for later in the day or the next day. We also catch up on laundry, sweep, mop, do dishes. Everyone helps with these responsibilities from our volunteers to our supervisors! During the middle of the day, you also may have the opportunity to help a staff member working on a special project, help to set up unoccupied enclosures, assist with exams for new arrivals or may even have the opportunity to assist on a release!​

Day End:

Like the beginning of the day, the late afternoon and evenings are also busy. We make sure all of our patients have nice, clean enclosures and plenty of food for the nighttime. Day End is also when we provide our nocturnal patients with care. We wait till later in the day to care for these patients so we don’t disrupt their natural behavior and sleep cycle! At the end of the day, everyone pitches in to make sure the center is clean and organized for the next day. We make sure all food is prepared as needed so we are ready to go come morning. In the last few minutes, we medicate our patients and make sure everyone is secure for the overnight. We lock the doors and head home to rest up for another exciting day!

wildlife Internship Application

Fill out the form below and we will get back to you ASAP

***All volunteer positions for 2024 have been filled. Please check back in 2025 for new opportunities. ***