Greenwood Wildlife Rehabilitation Center Celebrates 40th Anniversary

The Greenwood Wildlife Rehabilitation Center has helped and cared for nearly 200 different species of animals in Boulder County, and this year the center celebrates its 40th anniversary.

According to its website, the center has 16 rehabilitation workers licensed by the Colorado Division of Parks and Wildlife.

Dr. Alison Hazel began working with Greenwood in 2005, when she moved to Colorado and found an injured bird in her neighborhood. She brought the bird to Greenwood and then offered her skills as a seasoned wildlife veterinarian.

A sign at the Greenwood Wildlife Rehabilitation Center shows the current number of animals being cared for for treatment as of Monday, April 18, 2022. The center is celebrating its 40th year of service. (Matthew Jonas/staff photographer)

“I moved from upstate New York, where they have thousands of wildlife rehabilitators. Colorado has a handful,” says Hazel.

According to the Greenwood website, it is the only facility providing wildlife care from the northern Pueblo to the Wyoming border.

“In the whole totem of animal care, common wildlife species are at the bottom of the pecking order, and to have this team of people who are so dedicated to helping wildlife inspires me so much,” Hazel said. .

Greenwood opened in 1982, when the Humane Society of Boulder Valley established a wildlife center within its facilities. A year later, the family of Natalie Gneiser – a woman who died trying to save a dog – donated their memorial funds to Greenwood to help continue the expansion.

After gaining popularity, in 1993 the wildlife sanctuary was officially named Greenwood – after its first rehabilitated raccoon, Greenwood. In 1997, the center moved from the veterinary offices to a larger space where cages and better facilities were built for the rescued animals.

A squirrel hangs out in an outdoor enclosure at the Greenwood Wildlife Rehabilitation Center near Lyon on Monday, April 18, 2022. The center is celebrating 40 years of service. (Matthew Jonas/staff photographer)

In 2004, Greenwood opened a thrift store and consignment gallery at 3600 Arapahoe Ave. in Boulder to raise funds. In 2009 the annual Wild Night for Wildlife event began and the center moved to its current building between Longmont and Lyon.

Amanda Lau, executive director of Greenwood, moved to Colorado in 2009 and began working with local nonprofits, eventually reuniting with Greenwood in 2020.

“As the only wildlife rehabilitation center on the entire Front Range caring for birds, waterfowl and mammals, Greenwood is an incredibly valuable resource,” Lau said. “Greenwood’s goals have been twofold: wildlife rehabilitation, including the treatment and release of sick or injured wild animals and orphaned or abandoned baby animals, and public education to prevent or minimize wildlife interactions. and wildlife and provide humane solutions when such encounters occur.”

As Greenwood celebrates its 40th anniversary, the support the center has given to wildlife throughout Colorado continues to grow. Between veterinarians, volunteers and donors, Greenwood hopes to continue to be a fixture within the Boulder community.

“The need to rescue and rehabilitate injured and orphaned wildlife has grown as Front Range development has grown, and we have increasingly encroached on wildlife habitat,” said Clyde Mason, graphic designer at Greenwood for 30 years. “We all want to keep Colorado wild, and we have a responsibility to the wildlife that we have moved and harmed. Greenwood’s need will only grow stronger.


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Jennifer R. Strohm