††††† 301 KAR 2:075. Wildlife rehabilitation permit.


††††† RELATES TO: KRS 150.015, 150.021, 150.183, 150.195

††††† STATUTORY AUTHORITY: KRS 150.025, 150.280

††††† NECESSITY, FUNCTION AND CONFORMITY: KRS 150.025 authorizes the department to regulate wildlife in the Commonwealth. KRS 150.280 authorizes the department to promulgate administrative regulations regarding holding protected wildlife. This administrative regulation establishes the guidelines for issuing a permit to a wildlife rehabilitator, maintaining a facility for wildlife rehabilitation, and the operating standards for wildlife rehabilitators.


††††† Section 1. Definition. "Wildlife rehabilitation" means the process of rescuing, raising, and arranging for veterinary medical care of orphaned, sick, displaced, or injured wildlife with the goal of releasing the wildlife back into its natural habitat.


††††† Section 2. Wildlife Rehabilitation Permits. (1) An applicant for a wildlife rehabilitation permit shall:

††††† (a) Be a minimum of eighteen (18) years of age;

††††† (b) Fill out an application;

††††† (c) Send the application to the Director of Wildlife at #1 Sportsman's Lane, Frankfort, Kentucky 40601;

††††† (d) Submit proof of successful completion of the course entitled "Basic Wildlife Rehabilitation" offered by the International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council; and

††††† (e) Submit a twenty-five (25) dollar fee, which shall be paid each year for renewal of the permit.

††††† (2) An applicant may obtain a "course pending" status for up to one (1) year upon the issuance of the initial permit. Proof of course completion shall be submitted to the department before the permit shall be renewed.

††††† (3) A facility shall be preinspected by a conservation officer to document compliance with Section 4 of this administrative regulation before a permit is renewed.

††††† (4) An annual permit shall be issued by calendar year beginning in January.

††††† (5) Revocation of permits. A permit shall be revoked and wildlife confiscated if:

††††† (a) An applicant falsifies information on the application;

††††† (b) The permittee fails to comply with the provisions of this administrative regulation; or

††††† (c) The permittee is convicted of a violation of KRS Chapter 150.

††††† (6) An individual whose request for a permit has been denied or whose status has been revoked or suspended may request an administrative hearing pursuant to KRS Chapter 13B.


††††† Section 3. Requirements. (1) Wildlife may remain in a rehabilitation facility for a maximum of 180 days unless specifically exempted by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

††††† (2) A permittee shall produce an annual report on a form provided by the department and incorporated by reference specifying the following:

††††† (a) The species held;

††††† (b) The quantity of species held;

††††† (c) Status of each species;

††††† (d) Release location;

††††† (e) Date of release;

††††† (f) Tag information if required; and

††††† (g) If an animal is classified as nonreleaseable and held for educational purposes the annual report shall document each educational program including:

††††† 1. Date;

††††† 2. Time; and

††††† 3. Location of event.

††††† (3) A permittee shall not simultaneously hold captive wildlife for nonrehabilitation purposes under a "captive wildlife" permit issued in accordance with 301 KAR 2:081 or 301 KAR 2:083.

††††† (4) A permittee may retain wildlife classified as nonreleasable for educational purposes if the animal meets one (1) or more of the following conditions:

††††† (a) Is a mammal and has an amputated leg;

††††† (b) Lacks adequate vision to function in the wild;

††††† (c) Lacks locomotive skills necessary for survival in the wild; or

††††† (d) Exhibits another permanent injury that is reasonably expected to inhibit survival in the wild.

††††† (5) An animal classified as nonreleasable and retained for educational purposes shall be exhibited in an educational program a minimum of six (6) times per year.

††††† (6) Except where permitted under federal regulations, a permittee shall not propagate threatened and endangered wildlife.

††††† (7) The department shall be notified immediately, in writing, of any federally-threatened or endangered wildlife species delivered, recovered, or retained for rehabilitation.

††††† (8) A permittee shall not rehabilitate or attempt to rehabilitate any species of terrestrial wildlife not native to Kentucky.

††††† (9) A permittee shall not rehabilitate or attempt to rehabilitate cougars (Felis concolor), wolves (Canis lupus or Canis rufus), elk (Cervus elaphus) or bears (Ursus americanus).

††††† (10) A permittee shall not transport wildlife across state lines for rehabilitation, release, or any other purposes, unless authorized by the commissioner.

††††† (11) Rehabilitated wildlife shall be released into the appropriate habitat for that species.

††††† (12) A permittee shall obtain landowner permission before releasing rehabilitated wildlife.

††††† (13) Cervids shall not be held in a rehabilitation facility for more than 180 days. After 180 days a rehabilitation permit holder shall apply for a noncommercial captive cervid permit as specified in 301 KAR 2:083, if he or she wishes to hold the cervid for more than 180 days.

††††† (14) Wild-born cervids held in captivity for rehabilitation purposes shall not:

††††† (a) Be housed in the same pen or otherwise housed in direct physical contact with cervids that originated in captivity; and

††††† (b) Be housed in a pen that has ever housed cervids that originated in captivity.

††††† (15) A person holding a wildlife rehabilitation permit shall not buy, sell, offer to sell, trade, or barter cervids.

††††† (16) A person holding a wildlife rehabilitation permit shall not simultaneously hold a commercial captive cervid permit.


††††† Section 4. Facilities and Operating Standards. (1) Unless authorized by the Director of Wildlife, a facility shall comply with Minimum Standards for Wildlife Rehabilitation as adopted by the National Wildlife Rehabilitators Association and the International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council.

††††† (2) The holder of a rehabilitation permit shall allow a conservation officer to inspect the facilities at any reasonable time.

††††† (3) The conservation officer shall immediately notify the permit holder and the commissioner if the inspection reveals that the facility is not in compliance with the provisions of this administrative regulation.

††††† (4) The conservation officer shall make a second inspection after ten (10) days, and the permit shall be revoked and all captive wildlife confiscated immediately if the unsatisfactory conditions have not been corrected. The Director of Wildlife may authorize additional time for compliance and subsequent inspections as necessary.


††††† Section 5. Incorporation by Reference. (1) The following material is incorporated by reference:

††††† (a) The National Wildlife Rehabilitatorís Association and the International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council publication "Minimum Standards for Wildlife Rehabilitation", third edition, 2000;

††††† (b) "Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources Annual Report Form", 2002 edition; and

††††† (c) "Application for Wildlife Rehabilitation Permit", 2006 edition.

††††††††††††††† (2) This material may be inspected, copied, or obtained, subject to applicable copyright law, at the Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources, #1 Sportsman's Lane, Frankfort, Kentucky 40601, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. (28 Ky.R. 2478; Am. 29 Ky.R. 435; eff. 8-12-2002; 2958; 30 Ky.R. 278; eff. 8-13-03; 33 Ky.R. 518; 1077; eff. 10-11-06.)