The WILVOS hotline 5441 6200 number receives a number of calls about wildlife caught in barbed wire. These are really tragic cases as the pain must be terrible for the animals.
It is not only barbed wire fencing but also the strands at the top of security fences around businesses. Because it is not the most attractive looking fence, business operators often then plant native trees along the fenceline. They look great but are a magnet for wildlife.
Squirrel gliders and sugar gliders are often entangled. Flipping over in their attempt to escape they just get more entrapped. Sadly because of the extensive damage done to their gliding membranes these animals sometimes have to be euthanased. For an animal heading towards Vulnerable Status in Queensland, this is another reason why barbed wire should be banned.
I was horrified some years back when the Government subsidized barbed wire fencing when cane farms were converting to livestock. It is ignorance of a very tragic situation. There are other solutions for fencing.
Some months ago I had a little kangaroo joey caught in barbed wire fencing. It was an old barbed fence that was not maintained, and loose barbed wire is the worst. This joey did major damage to its legs and is only now free of splints and plaster.
Kookaburras, bats, owls and tawny frogmouths have also come into my care. There are many species that suffer injury and slow death on this wire. It is hoped that one day people will see the cruelty in this type of security and fencing wire and use the alternatives that are on offer. Terrie, a local wildlife carer, has put together a very convincing presentation that she is willing to show to anyone interested in the alternatives.
Donna Brennan Wildlife Volunteers Assoc Inc (WILVOS)
PO Box 4805 Sunshine Coast Mail Centre Q 4560 PH 5441 6200 www.wilvos.org.au