The Future of Wildworks
What is going on with our relocation?
For more than 25 years, our Wildworks Wildlife Care and Education Center was housed in Topanga Canyon, where we cared for approximately 50 animals, provided on-site education, and delivered over 100 awareness programs across Southern California each year. We are permitted and regulated by several government agencies that oversee animal health and safety.
However, due to the recent fires, changing times, and zoning issues, the county of Los Angeles decided we could no longer be there. We did not own the land we were on, which made it impossible to obtain the proper Conditional Use Permit there.
We wanted to remain there with all of our supporters in that area. We so wanted to continue our animal care and educational mission there, but because of the aggressive action that was being taken by the County, our immediate concern was the health and safety of the animals. With the insane cost of land and living in CA, we thought it was better to look elsewhere. This was why we purchased land near Sedona, AZ. It was ideal in many ways. We were excited for our new home! It was property purchased by Mollie Hogan, founder and director. The site offered a home, larger grounds, options for larger enclosures for the animals, and what we thought were supportive government agencies and local residents. It was also away from fires!
However, lies were spread about The Nature of Wildworks and neighbors started to not trust us. Our permitting was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic which gave the opposition more time to spread their lies further and grow. Once our meetings were finally rescheduled, it was too late. We tried to work with the neighbors and listen to their concerns, but even after promising no on-site visits or fundraising events, they still did not want us there. After a year an a half, three Planning and Zoning meetings (two of which were unanimously approved), and two Board of Supervisor meetings, we were told our final no.
Currently, our domestics and birds of prey are at the Arizona location. The land is allowed, by right, to hold 115 "unrestricted" animals of various sizes, and birds of prey fall under that category. The horses have a beautiful and HUGE open space to run around and live their best lives. The birds have the beautiful mews that we've always wanted them to live in.
As for our wild mammals, they are currently located at Zoo to You in Paso Robles. The people who run this facility have generously allowed us to house our wild mammals (and our two employees) there until we find our permanent home. Our animals are still completely under our care.
This is an extremely difficult time for us. We need your support now more than ever. We are taking our search for our new home back to California, where we know we already have support, but it is going to be a long process. Anywhere we go requires a Conditional Use Permit to house wild animals, which is a process that takes 3 months or longer, and with COVID still around, it will most likely take longer, but we are determined to keep Wildworks going to keep up with our mission of education and lifetime care for animals in need.
Keep checking back to this page for more updates, and like always, we still need your support! This is going to be a long and expensive process. Thank you all so much for your continued support and for sticking with us through these trying times. We truly could not do this without you. If you would like to donate to our relocation, please click the button below.