Medical Care at TRR
The Toucan Rescue Ranch has grown in our ability to take in sick and injured animals and provide inhouse care and rehabilitation. In 2013 a small veterinary clinic was built at headquarters in San Isidro, Heredia, Costa Rica. Generous donations allowed TRR to equip the clinic with an anesthesia machine, bandaging supplies, ultrasound machine, medications, etc. The clinic has been in constant use since its completion. Today, we are nationally recognized for our successful medical work on rescued wildlife. To ensure the utmost care and recovery the Toucan Rescue Ranch works with orthopedic surgeons, pathologists, radiologist, and physical therapists who visit headquarters to perform these practices, as well as, working in collaboration with their premier facilities.
Every animal received undergoes a thorough health check to evaluate what treatments are needed and if surgery is necessary. An overall observation and/or quarantine period is mandatory for all wildlife brought to our clinic. We have a full-time onsite veterinarian that provides daily treatments and if needed, is able to perform surgery. The Toucan Rescue Ranch also has a handful of highly successful and professional veterinarians that visit our facility on a regular basis. TRR has an accredited Internship Program that invites newly graduated veterinarians, vet technicians, vet nursers, and other medical professionals to learn about wildlife medicine and work hands-on on the clinic.
Most surgeries are done onsite. However, for the procedures we are unable to perform - we've built exceptional relationships with other professionals that enable us to provide the utmost care for rescued wildlife. Procedures we are able to perform onsite include: amputation, physicals, laceration stitching, casting, and so forth.
The medical care we provide at TRR would not be possible without the generous donations of supporters.
A Day in the Clinic
The day starts promptly at 7:00 a.m. with patients lining the walls of the clinic, there’s animals to attend to. This involves cleaning their bedding, feeding, and attending to each different species medical needs. Every animal is given a check-up and updates on their health written down in records. Treatments are administered to those who are prescribed. Throughout the day the animals receive constant care and enrichment, sometimes not ending with sunset - care will continue late into the night. Many of these animals are release candidates which need rehab work and exercise. Other animals in the clinic are orphaned babies in incubators, those with injuries or confiscated animals in quarantine for assessment. A day in the clinic is always an exciting and rewarding experience at the Toucan Rescue Ranch!
Learn about our Medical Team
Ana María Villada Rosales is the Ranch’s resident and traveling Veterinarian. She graduated from Vet school from the Universidad de Guadalajara, Mexico and has a Master’s in Conservation Medicine from Murdoch University, Australia. She has worked at zoological collections in Mexico and rescue centers in Australia working mainly with wildlife since graduating University. She oversees the clinic and overall treatments of injured animals, also oversees the caretaking of the sloths and their advancements within the sloth release program. When needed she travels between the Toucan Rescue Ranch’s Release Sites and headquarters for treatments and preventive medicine for the animals.Read more
Janet is the Ranch’s onsite veterinarian. She obtained her DMV from Escuela de Medicina y Cirugía Veterinaria San Francisco de Asís in 2006. During her studies, she worked with Aviarios Sloth Sanctuary 2005-2006 and interned with the Dallas World Aquarium December 2006 (exotics). Janet interned with the Wimberley Veterinary Clinic in Texas in 2007. She opened her private veterinary clinic in Curridabat, San José in 2008, and became a consultant to the zoo in Playa Bonita, Moín, Limón (Paradero Ecotour) in 2008. At the Ranch she conducts examinations, medical logs, procedures and surgeries. She oversees the overall health of all of the animals in the Ranch’s clinic and property. Her role as a veterinarian has evolved into more management tasks since obtaining her MBA.Read more
Why have Resident Animals?
An animal that is brought to TRR with severe injuries that will prevent it from eating, hunting, climbing, flying, foraging, or supporting itself independently in the wild is considered unreleasable. TRR has an extensive Release Program for orphaned sloths, various bird species, and other mammals. Animals that are desensitized to humans due to human interaction (like being kept as a pet) are considered unfit for release. This is because animals risk being captured and reintroduced into the black market as an illegal pet and could face animal neglect and abuse. As well as, have the chances of dying due to insufficient understanding of wild behaviors. Examples of non-releasable animals are parrots kept in someone’s home for years, an owl that has a missing wing, monkeys brought as orphans and do not have a troop to be released with, etc.
All rescued animals belong to Costa Rica and the wildlife governing body known as MINAE. The wildlife ministry monitors our activities, but do not contribute financially. As caretakers for wildlife, we are responsible for the cost of their medical care, diets, housing, special demands, and so forth. We do educational walks, have an authentic guesthouse experience, and have a symbolic adoption program to raise money to care for rescued wildlife.
TRR rescues wildlife with the intention of releasing the animal back into its natural environment. If TRR has the capacity to completely rehabilitate the animal from its former injuries/condition, then, with collaboration with MINAE, we release that animal back into its habitat.