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Terwilliger Nature Education Programs

Through our Terwilliger Nature Education programs, WildCare provides an amazing opportunity for everyone to experience the richness of California's ecosystems.

Our educational efforts were pioneered by Elizabeth Terwilliger, a woman with a keen curiosity and real reverence for the wild. “Mrs. T” developed an interactive, experiential type of learning that is still at the heart of our programs today, along with commitment to the California Science FrameworksClick to learn more about Mrs. Terwilliger.

We also offer a wide range of adult activities, including classes.

Field trip with a Nature Guide

Nature Hikes

WildCare's Terwilliger Nature Guides take small groups of school children on exploratory outdoor adventures at some of Marin and Sonoma's most beautiful sites.

Examining a specimen

Nature Van

WildCare's Nature Van brings the outdoors in! Trained naturalists visit the classroom and provide age-appropriate one-hour programs full of fun and exploration.

Families in Nature

WildCare Family Adventures

WildCare’s new programming initiative to encourage families to enjoy nature around the Bay Area. All programs are free, are taught in English and Spanish and meet at 10 a.m. at specific locations. Click for schedules and more information.

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 Live Wildlife Ambassador Programs

Live wild animal Ambassadors (and their handlers) are available for one or two 60-minute programs daily at a location within a maximum one-hour travel distance from WildCare.
Click to view available programs...

Clapper rail illustration

Teacher Resources

Prepare your class for an upcoming Terwilliger Nature Van visit or use our Student Activity Sheets to engage students in the study of the natural world for any curriculum, request a Terwilliger Nature Education Program for your class and more on our Teacher Resources page. 

Hiking at summer camp

Nature Camps

WildCare's Terwilliger Nature Camps are fun, stimulate learning about nature and instill a life-long respect for the environment. Holiday, Spring and Summer Camps available.

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Visit WildCare's Courtyard

WildCare’s courtyard is home to twenty non-releasable wild animals, our Wildlife Ambassadors. All of our Wildlife Ambassadors have shown themselves adaptable to the demands and stresses of living near humans, and each of them provides an invaluable opportunity for the public to view native animals up close. Click to view our schedule of FREE daily presentations of our Ambassadors!

Mojave the Desert Tortoise at WildCare

WildCare Center Tours

Get a nose-to-nose view of native birds, reptiles and mammals in engaging programs tailored to meet the learning needs of any age group at WildCare in San Rafael.

Sticky Monkey Flower

Junior Botanist Program

WildCare’s Junior Botanist Program introduces students to native trees, ferns, flowers and grasses. Grade-specific learning helps young people learn all about native plants.

Boy touching a taxidermy egret

Nature Kits

Teaching kits are available to check out for qualified educational organizations. Each kit contains a taxidermy animal in a lifelike pose, an information booklet with the animal's natural history, information on taxidermy, an inventory of the kit and suggested activities to help teachers and students explore this hands-on learning opportunity.

volunteer feeding WildCare's pelicans

Visit Us and Learn

WildCare’s courtyard and museum are open to the public from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. everyday except Christmas, Thanksgiving and New Year's Day, when we're open 9 a.m. to Noon. (Admission is free.) The museum is stocked with books, charts, pictures, and games, as well as taxidermic animals that can be touched.

Our courtyard is home to many non-releasable wild animals who serve as our Wildlife Ambassadors. Scoma is a Brown Pelican who suffered a wing injury and who can no longer fly or fish as he should. Sequoia, a Northern Spotted Owl, fell from the nest as a fledgling and also suffered a wing injury. You can visit Scoma, Sequoia, and the other Wildlife Ambassadors every day — and even watch them eat.

Special presentations of the Ambassadors are as follows:
Pool Bird Feeding, daily at 12:30 and 4:30 p.m.
Raptors On The Glove, Tuesday and Saturday from 3 to 5 p.m.
Please Note: Schedule subject to change without notice.

Nature guide on the trail

Scholarships Available

WildCare offers full and partial scholarships for van programs, field trips, and camps to schools and families in need. 

Visit wildcarebayarea.org/scholarships for more information and to request a scholarship. 

We need your help! Volunteer or Become a Member

Please consider volunteering as a Terwilliger Nature Guide! Share your love of nature with eager school children on exploratory outdoor adventures at beautiful natural sites in Marin and Sonoma Counties.

Training classes are held twice a year in February and September. Click for more information on upcoming trainings. 

Nature Van program participants meet taxidermic birds

We'd like to thank the following organizations for supporting WildCare's Education Programs:

bird print bullet point Marin Community Foundation
bird print bullet point First Five Marin
bird print bullet point Strong Foundation for Environmental Values
bird print bullet point Save the Redwoods League
bird print bullet point Thelma Doelger Trust for Animals
bird print bullet point Laurel Foundation

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