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B.S. in Zoology, University of Maryland, College Park

Professor O’Neil is the founder and director of Possumwood Acres Wildlife Sanctuary in Hubert, NC. She has been a state and federally licensed wildlife rehabilitator and wildlife rehabilitation instructor for over 30 years. Her specialty is the rehabilitation of songbirds, raptors, and coastal sea birds, shore birds, and waterfowl. She was involved in the public awareness campaign to stopping injuries to the Brown Pelican along the NC coastline caused by commercial fishing trawlers. In addition to wildlife rehabilitation, her sanctuary provides environmental education programs for local residents and school children, using their non-releasable education ambassador raptors and mammals.

Prof. O'Neil created the Come Find Your CENTER (Caring, Eco-therapy, Nature, Tranquility, Environment, Raptors) animal handling therapy program at Possumwood Acres. This program uses the non-releasable and resident birds and animals in activities that aid special-needs students and veterans with PTSD to reduce anxiety, stress, and depression.

She was an adjunct faculty member for Coastal Carolina Community College in Jacksonville, NC, before retiring from there in 2020. She devotes her attention to working with the state wildlife organization, Wildlife Rehabilitators of North Carolina (WRNC), and is currently serving as Board President again. For over 25 years, she has been a sought after speaker, presenting regularly at wildlife symposiums and conferences.

Possumwood Acres serves as a well-known training facility for students interested in pursuing an interest in wildlife rehabilitation and offers advanced level internships to provide opportunities to gain hands-on experiences year round.

Toni O'Neil

Professor of Wildlife Rehabilitation

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