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WILDWOOD WILDLIFE SHELTER

 A kangaroo hop from the Grampians National Park, Wildwood Wildlife Shelter provides a safe and peaceful haven for the rehabilitation and release of all sick, injured and orphaned native wildlife.

WILDLIFE RESCUE & FIRST AID

At some stage, if not already, you will come across an injured animal. As the first person on the scene your actions will determine the outcome of the injured or orphaned animal. Prompt action saves lives. Being prepared and knowing what to do in an emergency will increase the animal’s chance of survival.

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Firstly, you will need to put together a...

BASIC RESCUE KIT FOR YOUR CAR: 

smile Plastic Rio Basket or Cardboard box (preferably with lid) for transporting injured animal to vet or  Wildlife Shelter. ALWAYS make sure the animal is secure.

smile Towels, various sizes to catch and wrap

smile Blanket to cover and warm. Covering the animal’s head and staying very quiet usually keeps them calm. STRESS can KILL! 

smile Beanie (Ideal for baby animals)

smile Pillowcase (used as a substitute pouch for orphaned joeys)

smile Carry bag to place pouched joey in then hang over the headrest  

smile Hot water bottle (always keep the patient warm)

smile Torch

smile Disposable Gloves (for checking pouches & moving dead animals off the road)

smile Pen and paper to write down the exact location so the animal can be released back home 

smile Ribbon or string to tie around nearest post / tree. If you are unable to stay with the animal until the rescuer arrives, this will make finding the injured animal easier. 

 

Secondly, it is important that you know....

WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU FIND INJURED WILDLIFE:

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1. PROTECT YOURSELF. Personal safety is first and foremost. Injured animals don’t know if you are going to help them or harm them. They may kick, scratch or bite. If you are in a vehicle, turn your hazard lights on. Try to warn oncoming vehicles to slow down.

2. APROACH WITH CAUTION. Speak quietly and try not to frighten the animal. Remember that injured wildlife will be very scared and in pain. Keep all pets away.

3. REMOVE FROM ROAD. When it is safe to do so, move the animal off the road. If it is dead move it well away from the road to avoid a second kill. Birds such as eagles and hawks like to feast on dead wildlife.

If it is a marsupial ALWAYS CHECK THE POUCH.

 

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            Tiny 'pinky' Brushtai Possum                Mother Roo checking her pouch                  Orphaned joey clings to his dead mum

Kangaroos, wallabies, possums, koalas and wombats are often killed on roads leaving orphaned pouch young still alive. Carefully remove the orphan and follow the advice below.

4. FIRST AID+ If the animal is small enough wrap it in a towel or place it in a beanie or pillowcase before putting it in a well ventilated, secure cardboard box or container. (Pad the container with towels, a blanket or a jumper to make it nice and comfortable!) An injured or orphaned animal will be in shock so it is vital they be kept warm, dark and quiet. Take it to a vet or wildlife shelter immediately.

For larger animals you may need to call for assistance. There are several 24 hour emergency hotlines operating in Victoria. They are able to offer advice, put you in touch with the nearest Wildlife Shelter, Vet Clinic or interstate organisation, or organise to have a volunteer rescuer attend.

                               Wildlife Victoria: 13000 WILDLIFE (1300 094 535)

                                 Help for Wildlife: 0417 380 687

                                 WRIN: 0419 356 433

                                 BADGAR: 1300 223 427

                                 RACV Wildlife Connect: 13 11 11

 If possible, stay with the animal until help arrives. If unable to do so, the exact location must be highlighted eg. wp_foxtying something bright to a post or tree, drawing a large cross in the gravel or by placing large sticks to form an arrow. Make it obvious for a rescuer to immediately spot it.

 

Animals will often crawl away and hide. Kangaroos with broken legs have been found as far as 1.5k away.

 

Injured animals are easily predated upon, usually by foxes. Foxes are not merciful killers. They will first eat the tastiest bits like the tongue, then tear open the pouch of a female roo to get to her milk, leaving the animal to suffer a prolonged, cruel death. Vixen's will take a live joey back to the den for her cub's to practice their killing technique. The old adage 'Let nature take it's course' is a cop-out. Take responsibility, show compassion and do the right thing even if it means being a bit late!

 

WHAT NOT TO DO:

  • sad Please do not handle the animal more than is absolutely necessary

  • sad Please do not allow the kids to touch it or the pets to sniff it!

  • sad Please do not attempt to feed or give fluids

  • sad Please do not keep the animal overnight before ringing for help

YOUR 1ST AID WILL DETERMINE IF THE ANIMAL LIVES OR DIES!

 

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ALL WILDLIFE

IS PROTECTED BY LAW AND CANNOT BE HELD BY MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC.

 

 

WARNING....

The images below, although far too familiar on our roads today, may cause distress!

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Unfortunately there will be many times when we arrive at the scene only to find the animal either dead or too badly injured to be saved.

The photo below left shows a female roo and her joey both hit by a vehicle and left in the middle of the road. The disturbing thing about this is that the call came through to me from a concerned person that a small joey was standing on the road next to it's dead mum. I left immediately and arrived within 10 minutes only to find the joey had been hit moments before. The bodies were within 50 meters of a kangaroo warning sign. Had the driver heeded the signs and slowed down, this tragic loss of life could have been avoided.

The photo on right shows a kangaroo with a badly broken leg, left for dead on the side of a busy highway. She and her tiny (too small to save) joey were both euthanased after hours of suffering.

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  THIS IS THE OTHER ROAD TOLL!

Remember to SLOW DOWN and GIVE WAY to wildlife.