GRANTS PASS, Ore. — For the third time this year, Wildlife Images & Rehabilitation Center must close its doors to the public, the park announced on Wednesday. The notice came with news that the Irwins have offered to match $100,000 toward its "Give Now, Do More" campaign.
Wildlife Images closed temporarily in January after a storm brought down trees and damaged fences. In the spring, Oregon's lockdown due to COVID-19 closed the park for eight weeks. Now, the two-week "freeze" has closed it again.
"The park was still recovering from lost revenue during an original eight week long Covid-19 closure in the spring. Admissions during the busiest time of year were down and traditional field trip income was non-existent," Wildlife Images said. "Normally, these sources of income are vital to the year-round operation of the wildlife clinic and park. Once again, Wildlife Images is forced to close and will lose at least one event as well as the increased visitation over the Thanksgiving holiday."
Now the park hopes that the "Give Now, Do More" campaign will help stave off financial uncertainty during this unusual year. Despite the closures, Wildlife Images says that it has received more than 1,200 animal patients to rehabilatate, more than any other year.
Wildlife Images said that it had raised $40,000 as of the end of July, thanks to patrons and guests at this year's fundraiser. Now the park hopes that the community can help them to raise the remaining $60,000.
"Wildlife Images has long valued its friendship with the Irwins and Australia Zoo and it can now officially come alongside the family's instrumental non-profit organization, Wildlife Warriors Worldwide, as a partner agency," the park said. "This is exciting news for the wild places and wildlife around our globe and right here at home."