If you are interested in volunteering, please print a WLS Volunteer Application and return it to the Wildlife Sanctuary office or Observation Building either in person or by mail. You can also email the completed application to firstname.lastname@example.org We will contact you for an interview after review. If you have any questions, please contact the main office at (920) 391-3671 or email at email@example.com.
Click on an area of interest below to learn more.
- Animal Care
- Critter Counter
- Invasive Species Management
- Grounds Maintenance & Resource Management
- Gift Shop Attendant
- Special Events
- Environmental Education
There are 3 different areas available in Animal Care for volunteers to work with a keeper. We typically ask for 3-4 hours either once a week or twice a month. The volunteer opportunities depend on your availability and what areas are in need of volunteers. Animal handling experience is encouraged but not required.
Woodland Building—This is typically available in the mornings. This area houses our large mammals, nocturnal exhibits, and animal yards. You would assist the keeper with diet preparation, cage maintenance, yard feeding, and nocturnal exhibit maintenance, among other duties. You will be indoors and outdoors every shift.
Observation Building A.M.—This morning route is to mainly care for our Animal Ambassadors and small mammals and birds. Most of the work is indoors, but there is some outside work. You would assist the keeper with diet preparation, cage maintenance, and enrichment. There is some animal handling and possibly experience with wildlife rehabilitation.
Observation Building P.M.—This afternoon route focuses on our Birds of Prey and outdoor animal areas. You would assist the keeper with raptor diet prep, duck exhibit maintenance, raptor exhibit maintenance, and care for other outdoor animals. You will be indoors and outdoors every shift.
This is an open area that allows the public to visit with our animal ambassadors, pet them, and learn more about them. This is an area that is open on weekends from 11am until 2pm, but in the summer can be available during the week. You experience talking with the public, interacting with the public and the animals, and teaching about the animal you are handling. Public speaking skills are a must; we do train you on how to properly handle animals and answer questions.
The Rehabilitation Program at the Wildlife Sanctuary is a great way to experience caring for orphaned wildlife and the joy of returning them to the wild. If you live within 20 miles of the Wildlife Sanctuary and are over 18 years of age you can become an off-site volunteer and assist the Sanctuary with the over 4,500 animals brought in by the public annually. There are 2 mandatory training sessions. The first is an informational general session on the last Saturday in March from 8am until 1pm. There is no obligation by attending this training. Pre-registration is required by calling (920) 391-3671. The cost is $2.00 to cover material fees.
Invasive Species Management
This year-round opportunity helps the Wildlife Sanctuary maintain the invasive species population of many plants, such as garlic mustard, phragmites, and buckthorn. This is outside work that makes an immediate impact on the plants and animals of Northeast Wisconsin.
Grounds Maintenance & Resource Management
This includes watering of plants in and around the buildings and grounds, greenhouse maintenance, picking litter, trail wood chip maintenance, mulching, nest box monitoring, firewood splitting, among many other activities.
Gift Shop Attendant
Help the Friends of the Wildlife Sanctuary and the public by volunteering in our gift shop. The gift shop is open 12 noon until 4pm daily.
The Wildlife Sanctuary puts on large events for the public throughout the year. We need help not just the day of the event, but also in the preparation stages. Volunteer needs depend on the event.
Would you like to help people learn about the world around them? Our naturalists put on hundreds of programs each year for the public about the environment and its animals.