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San Diego Humane Society

Small Mammals: Coexist with Wildlife

Background Information

There are more than 30 species of small mammals in the San Diego area. Project Wildlife helps about 100 small mammals every year, including moles, voles, gophers, chipmunks and weasels. With the exception of the Kangaroo Rat, Project Wildlife does not rehabilitate mice and rat species. This is because these species can carry the Hantavirus that is still present in San Diego County and they are considered vector species.

Did You Know?

The most common calls to Project Wildlife are about rodent/rat problems. Unfortunately, there are few humane ways of dealing with rodent populations and since they are a vector species, they are not rehabilitated by Project Wildlife. The key is prevention such as not feeding pets outside, keeping bird feeders clean, securing trash cans and blocking access to the building. Project Wildlife does not provide pest control services.

If you've found an injured animal and need information on where to take it, please call: (619) 299-7012  Please press option  #4.

Pocket Gophers are beneficial because their burrows are a key source of aeration for the soils of the region.

When does a small mammal need to come to the Project Wildlife Care Center?

Abandoned Babies

If the animal is not a vector species*, Project Wildlife can accept it for rehabilitation. Drop-off locations

It is Sick or Injured

If the animal is not a vector species*, Project Wildlife can accept it for rehabilitation. Drop-off locations

*If a vector species, such mice and rats, are brought to our care center, unfortunately, the only option is humane euthanasia. A vector species is defined as an small mammal that does not cause disease itself but which spreads infection by conveying pathogens from one host to another.

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