The Florida Wild Mammal Association, Inc. (FWMA) is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to the rescue, rehabilitation and release of sick, injured and orphaned wildlife in the North Florida region of the panhandle. FWMA is equally committed to educating the public on wildlife issues and providing educational opportunities through our Youth Education Program and various in-house and outreach programs.
The facility provides wildlife rescue services and education programs to WakullaCounty as well as Jefferson, Taylor, Franklin, and sections of LeonCounty. It is located on 6 acres of rural land. The property has 28 animal habitats (enclosures), 3½ acres of deer pens, a medical room for incoming and acute care, and a nursery room for baby birds.
FWMA provides care for all types of native wildlife including birds, mammals, and reptiles. Between 700 and 1000 animals are brought to the facility annually for treatment and rehabilitation. Our goal is to release every animal back into its natural habitat upon recovery. Those that cannot be released due to the severity of their injuries are transferred to other permitted wildlife sanctuaries or remain at FWMA where they become wildlife ambassadors for their species as part of our educational and outreach programs.
FWMA is equally dedicated to educating the community and offers a variety of learning opportunities in order to promote awareness and appreciation of wildlife and the environment. Through the FWMA Youth Education Program, we provide hands-on training and employment opportunities to young people from diverse backgrounds, allowing them the chance to develop vocational and educational skills by caring for wildlife in a safe, structured setting. In addition, outreach programs are offered through in local schools, libraries and community events.
FWMA was founded in 1994 by Chris and Mike Beatty as a place to bring sick, injured and orphaned wildlife in need of treatment and care until recovered and subsequently released back into their natural habitat. The organization is run by an elected board of directors. Chris Beatty is the Executive Director, and she and her family own and live on the property and are the main caregivers of the animals. Chris has been licensed since 1987 as a wildlife rehabilitator and receives no compensation for her responsibilities in caring for and overseeing treatment of the animals.