In the movie, when Bernard and Miss Bianca go to find Orville to get a flight to Australia to rescue Cody who has been kidnapped by Percival C. McLeach, they realize that Orville no longer runs the Albatross Airlines. Instead, his brother Wilbur has taken over. Bernard and Bianca find Wilbur dancing to some rather loud music that Bernard has to stop in order to get Wilbur's attention. When Wilbur meets Miss Bianca he tells her that Orville told him all about her. Bernard asks Wilbur to give them a flight that night, but Wilbur refuses because of the snow storm outside. However, when they inform him that a kidnapped child is at steak, Wilbur quickly changes his mind and decides to fly them to Australia after all. His takeoff is so fast and clumsy it causes a car accident below on the streets. On the way, they make connections with an airliner plane also en route to Australia and stow away in the plane's cargo holder. When the plane arrives at Sydney, Wilbur flies the mice out to a little outback airport where a kangaroo mouse named Jake works.
When Wilbur radios into Jake about landing, Jake tells Wilbur to turn around and land somewhere because the runway isn't big enough for a bird his size. Wilbur refuses this and decides to try and land on the runway anyway. When Wilbur lands, Jake helps Bernard and Bianca off the bird. Wilbur throws his back out and Jake helps get Wilbur get to a mouse-run hospital, where Bernard, Bianca, and Jake tell Wilbur they'll come back for him as soon as they find Cody. At the hospital, the doctor has Wilbur undergo several odd operations, including shooting a rifle loaded with tranquilizers at him. The next morning, the nurse mice put Wilbur's head in a vice and are preparing to use a chainsaw, which they refer to as the "epidermal tissue disruptor", on him, causing Wilbur to panic. He tries to escape but the Nurse Mice pull him back inside and he lies flat on his back on top of the doctor. Wilbur feels his back is now locked in place and he exits, flying off to find Bernard, Bianca, and Jake. While flying Wilbur notices some female birds and asks them if they've seen any mice wandering down there, but the birds ignore him and fly off. Soon, Wilbur arrives where Bernard is hiding Marahute's eggs. Bernard orders him to sit on Marahute's eggs to keep them warm while he goes to rescue Cody, Bianca, Jake, and Marahute from the evil poacher, Percival C. McLeach.
At the end of the film, Wilbur is seen still sitting on the eggs and calling for Bernard and Bianca, but just as he's about to fly away, the eggs hatch and Wilbur finds out that one of Marahute's babies is cute and when he was cooing, an eaglet bites him, causing Wilbur to scream in pain as the credits to the movie roll.
Since The Rescuers Down Under was the only sequel in the series, it's unknown what happens to Wilbur after the babies hatch at the end of the film. It's possible he became the new mate of Marahute since she lost her first mate, but this is doubtful, since Wilbur and his brother Orville are both based on the Wright Brothers, who in real life never married or had children. Hopefully, Bernard and Bianca, who were seen at the end of the movie riding Marahute, eventually remembered Wilbur and returned to him so he could take them back to New York City, but the rest afterwards remains unknown.
Storyboards for an unused extension to the film's ending (seen in the book Paper Dreams: The Art & Artists of Disney Storyboards), in which Bernard and Bianca ride off on Wilbur after their wedding, suggest that they evidently did return to him.
Like his brother, Orville, Wilbur is named after Wilbur Wright of the Wright brothers.
Although Wilbur and Orville look alike (since they're brothers), you can tell the difference between the looks of the two albatross brothers by the scarf color; Wilbur's scarf is aqua-colored, while Orville's scarf is lavender-colored.
Interestingly, his main catchphrase, 'Cowabunga!' is the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles' main catchphrase as well.