Summer Bucket List: See Something Wild

Welcome to’s Summer Bucket List series, brought to you by the good folks at Cape Cod Calling. Each week, we will bring you a new idea for you to enjoy your summer here on Cape Cod.  

Who says having fun on Cape Cod can’t be educational at the same time? The Cape offers so much to visitors in the way of sand and sun, as well as culture, music, art, shopping … the choices for summer fun are almost endless.  So, why not try something completely wild, like visiting a wild animal rehabilitation center?

Cape Cod is bustling with an enormous variety of wildlife, hailing from land, sea and air. Each of these creatures is important to the Cape’s natural ecosystem. Now and then, however, an animal is injured to the point of requiring special care. That’s where our animal rescue and conservation organizations come in.

Wild Care Cape Cod, in Eastham, treats injured, ill and orphaned native wildlife for release, to prevent wildlife casualties through public education and live counseling, and to engage the community in conservation through volunteerism. Since its founding, Wild Care has accepted over 24,000 wild creatures, representing 275 species of native birds, mammals, and reptiles. 

Wild Care provides customized presentations to the public and specializing in small groups, year-round.  All presentations are provided by seasoned volunteers and Wild Care Staff who are experienced wildlife rehabilitators with over 30 years of experience working with local wildlife. 

The organization has a state-of-the-art seabird therapy pool, which allows seabirds and waterfowl to exercise on running water. Their purpose is to care for these wild animals with as little stress on them as possible, and returning them to the wild when appropriate. For more information on Wild Care, visit

The National Marine Life Center, in Bourne, is an independent, non-profit marine animal hospital, and science and education center. As Cape Cod is a hotspot for strandings throughout the year, with hundreds of marine animals strand alive on our shores and in need of medical care, the National Marine Life Center and its staff strive to meet that need. Their mission is to rehabilitate and release stranded marine mammals and sea turtles. 

Through rehabilitation, they can help individual animals, learn more about marine animal species and wildlife disease, and share what they learn to promote ocean conservation. They offer a variety of drop-in public programs as well as educational outreach and classes. To find out more about what kinds of animals the National Marine Life Center treats, visit

The Cape Wildlife Center, in Barnstable, is a non-profit wildlife hospital and education center. Each year they provide veterinary care and rehabilitation to around 2,000 sick, injured, and orphaned wild animals. In the process of caring for these patients, they work to educate members of the public and spread the message of environmental conservation.

Their five-acre facility is bustling with students, staff, volunteers and members of the public all working towards a single goa – raising the level of environmental stewardship in the community through the provision of high-quality medical care to wildlife in need and environmental education to students of all ages.

The Center’s patients represent 225 different species including bats, raptors, red foxes, grey squirrels, eastern cottontails, muskrats, fishers, otters, songbirds, turtles and shorebirds. For more information on the Cape Wildlife Center, visit

Check Out Other Summer Bucket List Ideas on the Cape!

If you are interested in seeing what else is out there to do on the Cape during the summer, check out our Summer Bucket List with some other ideas.

About Cape Cod Calling - Summer Bucket List Sponsor

Inspired by the beauty and magic of Cape Cod, its people and their many creative talents, Cape Cod Calling was founded by two washashores, Don and Denise Montgomery, who now call Cape Cod home. Cape Cod Calling is a subscription box and gift box curation service. Each box includes a variety of treasures made locally on Cape Cod by the talented Cape Codders and washashores who call Cape Cod home. For more information on Cape Cod Calling, click here.
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