The Christmas/New Year break can be a worrying time for native animal carers. Hopefully, wildlife carers across Australia have not had too many more patients with the increased number of cars on the road over the holidays, along with more abandoned , or just plain neglected, domestic animals roaming around
Holiday time often means more wildlife coming into care. Increased fishing activity leads to more little plastic bags that find their way into the stomachs of platypus, turtles, fish, birds and reptiles. It is promising to see so many more people aware of this problem these days. I saw a young lad fishing at a river last week and he was consciously being very diligent at putting his plastic bait bags and discarded fishing line into a special lidded bucket. Our young people are the future of our wildlife. Oops, sorry fish!
I am often puzzled at the attitudes of people towards wildlife. Visiting friends, observing my wallabies hanging in their pouches on the back patio and grazing in the back yard, commented on how clean native animals are. That surprised me but made me think. They are brought up in such a pristine mothers pouch and any wild animals’ survival depends on keeping their environment clean. As with all animals, it is their carer who is at fault if an animal or their environment is dirty. It always amazed me noticing the difference between the hygiene habits of a feral pig and a high-density farm pig. Those ferals were much cleaner!
There are still young birds out there being often unnecessarily picked up and taken from parents. I’d urge everyone if you see a bird on the ground, just observe it for a while to see if any injuries and if parents are feeding. If there are no predators around, parents will usually come and feed them until the young improve their flying skills. Of course, if concerned, just call our WILVOS hotline and they can advise you or recommend someone you can call for further advice.
Thank you to the very generous Nambour Apex Club for their recent donation to help one of our newer members with her macropod fencing. Rachel has been an invaluable member since joining early last year. Besides becoming a very proficient macropod carer, she has contributed to the administration side in ways too many to list. Looking after cute native animals is one thing, but not too many people want to submerge themselves in paper work. Those jobs tend to grow and grow!
Let us hope that 2018 is a good year for all animals. Happy new year to all.
Donna Brennan Wildlife Volunteers Assoc Inc (WILVOS)
PO Box 4805 Sunshine Coast Mail Centre Q 4560 PH 5441 6200 www.wilvos.org.au