Thank you Ken for bringing this beautiful Wedge-tailed eagle to WIRES attention, she was undernourished and unable to fly.
After days of tender loving care by WIRES raptor coordinator Melanie she was successfully released back where she was found.
Melanie said " As you can see I had my heart in my mouth as to whether she could fly well enough, but she was wonderful "
By Tina Coutts
WIRES received a call early in the morning on 1st March that a wallaby had been hit by a car at Wadeville, the wallaby was injured but had disappeared in to thick scrub. It was also mentioned that the wallaby was a female with a joey in the pouch. WIRES rescuer Jen and Macropod carer Tina went out to the scene of the accident but was unable to locate the wallaby or her joey.
On the evening of the 5th March WIRES received another call from Marshall who had seen a small joey on the side of the road as they drove past. Jen once again went to the rescue and realised this was the exact same spot where the injured mother was last seen.
The little male Red-Neck wallaby joey was brought to Tina weighing just 790 gm. He was severely dehydrated and his feet were swollen and bleeding. At this stage of development he would not yet be out of the pouch let alone stand and hop.
He was given intensive care eg. rehydrated, three hourly bottles and treatment for possible Myopathy.
Marshall as he has been named is seen here 5 weeks after coming in to care, he will be released back to the wild when old enough to fend for himself in about 8 months time..
UPDATE September 2010
Joey seen here 5 months after coming in to care, Marshall has thrived and will be released with his friends in a few months time.
By Alicia Carter
This Noisy Pitta was found in Corndale, lying in a paddock. Colleen and
her husband found the pitta lying in the paddock unable to fly. It seems
that perhaps he was the victim of a Motor Vehicle collision as he has punctured air sacs and some bruising and swelling (no break thank goodness).
He came from an unusual location considering they are a rainforest
species. Lamington National Park has them hopping around the campsites. So far the
Pitta is showing great signs of improvement in intensive care and we hope that this multi colored rare beauty can be released soon.
By Melanie Barsony
Tony, who works with Woollam Constructions called WIRES after a large carpet snake was found in the roof of Casino Public School toilet block. The old ceiling was being replaced, so the snake needed to be taken out of harms way until the job was finished. Melanie rescued the snake and it spent a number of weeks in care with Tony from WIRES until it was safe for it to be returned home.
Thank you to Woollam Constructions for calling WIRES
For Louise and family, by Leoni Byron Jackson
This little Mountain Brushtail possum was found at Lindendale 3rd April lying next to his dead mother.
Thank you to Louise's two young sons for being vigilant, giving this little fellow a second chance at life.
This non-venomous Green tree snake was rescued by WIRES snake handler Melanie from the Bentley Pre-school Hall. It had become entangled in some strapping that was tied around books. Luckily it wasn't injured and was released nearby into a large tree.
Please be advised only trained reptile handlers should handle a snake, do not attempt a snake rescue unless you have been properly trained.
By Sharon McGrigor
LACE MONITOR RESCUED FROM PLASTIC BAG
This rather large Lace Monitor was found by WIRES Carers Eric Kinchin & Sharon McGrigor at Rummery Park, near Minyon Falls.
He was unable to remove the plastic bag and required a little assistance. On closer inspection it was found that he was trying to reach some left over food located in the plastic bag.
A few minutes after this photo was taken he actually started to eat the plastic bag and that's when Eric & Sharon decided to intervene. A little caution was needed, as he was already agitated. He was soon free to roam the camping grounds that are in his home range. A quick check of the area was also needed to remove rubbish from the area, so that this sort of incident would not happen again.
Large Lace Monitors are often seen in and around the northern rivers camping grounds. That is why it is so important that visitors take all rubbish home with them. This monitor was lucky. If he had ingested the plastic bag, he would have been in real trouble.
By Leoni Byron-Jackson for Debbie
On the 5th March I was called to do a rescue in Wollongbar where I met up with Debbie who had called WIRES emergency phone line to say she had found a baby possum.
When I got there I found a little 370 gram Mountain Brushtail possum sitting on the ground next to his decomposed mother, there was only fur and bone left. The little fellow was just sitting there looking at what was left of his mum, such a sad sight. Even though he was debilitated having had little nourishment he still put up a fight when I tried to catch him.
He is doing really well in care and has been named little Renegade. His determination will serve him well in the future when he is released back to the wild when old enough to fend for himself.
By Alicia Carter
WIRES carer Tristan rescued this little White-headed pigeon after he was dropped from the sky by a crow.
The pigeon's injuries included a split above the eye that required stitches, a split in the crop and its beak did not quite match up properly.
As you can see in the picture on the right the stitches have now dissolved and the wound has healed perfectly. The crop gash which was 1.5 cm long healed from the inside. He isn't quite feeding himself yet but is in the aviary with two slightly older pigeons that have also been hand raised and he is starting to give it a go.
By Lib Ruytenberg
Is Your Fencing Wildlife Friendly?
Wildlife Friendly Fencing is a campaign encouraging landowners to make fencing safer and more effective for wildlife, people and livestock.
Thousands of animals die each year on barbed wire. These entanglements often leave members of the public and rescuers distressed due to the severity of the injuries to wildlife. Nocturnal animals such as bats, gliders and owls are particularly susceptible, often entangled when flying down towards fruiting trees or dams and creeks. We ask people to modify the fencing adjacent to these ‘hot spots’ in order to minimise the risk to wildlife. Often this involves short sections of fence rather than its full length.
Firstly, we ask landowners to consider whether the barbed wire fence is necessary. Sometimes the fence no longer contains livestock so could be removed or replaced with plain wire. If the barbed wire fence is needed, you could cover the top strand in the hot spot zone with poly pipe split longitudinally. WIRES volunteers can assist with this, with our poly pipe splitter and applicator. Other objects can be used to cover or make the top strand of barbed wire more visible.
Consider replacing the top strand with plain wire, and when planning a new fence, consider whether barbed wire is really necessary.
Our region is blessed with many possums and glider species, some endangered. They are common victims of barbed wire, so we ask landowners to plant trees to shorten the gliding distance between trees, no more than 20m apart. Wildlife corridors are critical for wildlife survival. Please don’t plant fruiting trees next to barbed wire fences.
If you have old wire that no longer has a purpose, please dispose of it properly. We regularly receive calls for wildlife entangled in disused wire or netting.
It is very important that you do not cut the animal to try to free it as this would cause the animal further pain and almost certainly make it unviable for survival. WIRES volunteers are equipped and trained to remove animals from barbed wire, so call our hotline and someone will come to the animal’s rescue.
For further information,
By Katy Stewart
Michelle Coker was bike riding in Wardell on the 4th of March when she came across what looked like a small rat on the road, when she picked it up she realised it was in fact a tiny Ringtail possum.
She wrapped him snugly and put him in her hat on the back of her bike and rang me.
Michelle named him Pablo and he came along for the rest of her 15km bike ride. Some hours later he arrived at my place lovely and warm though very thirsty.
He has joined other Ringtail possums in my care of similar stage of development and all will be released together when old enough to fend for them selves.
By Sharon McGrigor
Bush-hen (Amaurornis olivacea )
Recently, one of our WIRES members, Julie Reid, logged a Bush-hen into our database. Upon further investigation it was found that a small community of these threatened birds live around the Jiggi wetlands area.
The Bush-hen is not to be confused with the more prolific swamp-hen. In NSW, the Bush-hen is listed as 'Vulnerable and Rare'. Only 58 known locations have been listed in NSW and documentation within Australia has been scarce and erratic.
To read more click here
'BOO' the Echidna
Little 'Boo' came into WIRES care from Melinda in Rosebank. She was found wandering around after heavy rain and had been washed from her burrow. She was flyblown, waterlogged and still dependant on her mothers milk. To make things worse some of her spines had become infected and were starting to fall out. Not a good start for a 'just spined' young Echidna.
After a thorough wash at Lismore Central Vet Clinic, Veterinarian Tony and her team of Vet Nurses set to work to clean between each of her infected spines. This was quite a lengthy process but everyone was delighted to help find and bathe her wounds.
Little Boo was a very good patient and then went into care with WIRES Echidna coordinator, Sharon McGrigor, who had been assisting at the Vets'. Boo then began her rehabilitation in her new home, a hollow log in an undercover fly proof enclosure.
She responded well to her new dry surroundings and enjoyed her specialized milk & meat formula. Under Sharon's care, her wounds began healing and she steadily gained weight.
Sharon said, “these little ones often get very bored in care, so it is important to keep up a regular supply of new termite ridden, rotten logs for them to explore. Boo is no different to any other young Echidna, and delights at destroying all of her logs in search of termites”. She often plays Peek-a-Boo, to keep herself amused, and thus her name, Boo.
A month later Boo has now gained her release weight and is ready for release back into her 'home range' on Ridgewood Road.
Sharon believes she has a will to thrive and says that Boo is very active juvenile. All good signs for a young dispersing Echidna. She has a bright, inquisitive demeanor and should do well in the wild.
UPDATE: By Sharon McGrigor
Boo is almost ready for her release and is just waiting for the rain to stop.
To keep her occupied, while she is waiting, we have added some more logs & leaf litter to her enclosure for her to explore. In between the showers, when the sun does comes out Boo has some time to explore out of her enclosure.
She is just so cute-I have completely fallen in love with her. But I look forward to her release day so that she can explore the big wild world.
When you raise a young Echidna such as Boo, you soon learn how inquisitive they are.. They really do love exploring
By Ros Glencross for Anne
Saturday 6th February I received a call from our roster regarding a fig bird at Coffee Camp
I called to Anne's place at Coffee Camp with the intention of collecting a Fig bird chick that had been found sitting on the bottom wire of a fence - mum nowhere in sight. When I arrived on Sat morning Anne told me that she had seen the mother flying around at about 11 pm. At that stage the chick was in a box on the outdoor table. It was able to perch but not fly. I came home and collected a hanging basket, filled it with leaves and attached it to a tree branch at the back verandah. Whilst there I gave it a small amount of fruit and asked Anne if she could support feed it and observe the mother and chick. I could see Mum flying about so felt confident she would continue to feed it. Apparently Mum came back about every 15 min's to feed it!!!
I called in today to collect my hanging basket and Anne said Mum and young one flew off together about a week ago.
Thank you Anne for helping reunite Mum and chick.
By Sue Ulyatt
WIRES rescuers Jackie and Ken collected a very small Ringtail possum called in to our emergency roster on 14 February and brought it straight to me as it had been brought in to the caller by their cat. In cases such as this it is vital that the animal is given antibiotics as soon as possible to stop infection.
I opened the pouch expecting to see a small Ringtail possum, but was most surprised to see a juvenile Sugar glider the colour of a Ringtail.
Sugar gliders are grey with a black stripe running from nose down their back. This one had the right markings but the wrong colour.
I kept the little female in care for 6 days to ensure she had no ill effects from being caught by the cat, and as her course of antibiotics were finished I called Jackie and Ken to release her where she had come from so she could join her mum and colony.
I called the person that had found the little Glider as we needed to return her to the right location as Gliders are territorial. This one also would need to find her mum. Although she was at dispersal stage of development, she would still need the colony for survival.
The caller informed me that the cat had smelled strongly of eucalypt when it had returned home with the little Glider, and the only eucalypts were close to his house.
Gliders are released well after dark as predators are many, so this little lady was taken to the site at 9pm.
Jackie and Ken opened the carrier cage by the eucalypt trees and the little Glider jumped out, did a hop on the ground and leapt up the tree. It continued right to the top and disappeared from sight.
Jackie said she had never seen anything move so fast. The glider had recognised the smell of home.
Sugar Gliders can have a brown tinge when very old, but in approximately 13 years of caring I have never seen a healthy young brown Sugar Glider. Just goes to show there are still surprises out there in the wild.
By Melanie Barsony for Cathy
Cathy noticed this Nankeen Night Heron chick on its own in a park in Casino while she was walking her dog.
She called WIRES when she arrived home, but in the meantime the chick had wandered off.
With Cathy's help the chick was located after some searching, it was very dehydrated and starving.
Heron adults will not feed their chicks if they fall from the nest, unlike a lot of other birds.
Thank you to Cathy for finding this unusual chick, without help it would have surely died.
When Mary realised her orchard netting had become a deadly trap for a snake she called WIRES for assistance.
WIRES reptile handlers Helen and Melanie went to Dyrabba to Mary's property and found this Eastern Brown snake in big trouble as you can see, totally entangled in the netting.
Helen and Melanie managed to free the snake which was very dehydrated and it will be in care until it has recovered form its ordeal.
Thank you Mary for calling WIRES.
Please be advised only trained reptile handlers should handle a snake, do not attempt a snake rescue such a this unless you have been properly trained.
June from Eureka found this tiny Mountain Brushtail possum lying under a tree on her property. June called WIRES and the little female was brought in to care. She was very dehydrated and undernourished indicating that mum may have been ill for some time before the joey was found. Mum was not located unfortunately.
Possum was given intensive care, it is early days yet and we will keep up informed as to her condition.
Thank you June for calling WIRES
Unfortunately the little possum joey did not survive, she died after 4 days in care.
This little Red-Necked wallaby came into care in September 2009 a victim of the Repco car rally. Her mum was killed by a spectators car near Kyogle.
She spent her first 4 months in care in a nursery pen with another 4 Red-Necked wallabies of similar stages of development, cared for by WIRES macropod carer Tina.
She has now moved to a 1 acre pre release enclosure built by Tina partly paid for by donations from
Northern Rivers members of the public. Large enclosures such as this are needed to prepare hand reared macropod's for release back to the wild.
Image on the left shows small shelter within the enclosure where supplementary food and water is available. The little joey will be released in approximately 4 months time.
Alan was slashing a section of property that is seldom slashed when he realised he had run over a large Carpet python coiled around her eggs. Mum python was dead and many of the eggs had been exposed and the tiny hatchlings had also died.
However a number of eggs were still intact, so Alan called WIRES asking would the eggs possibly hatch. WIRES reptile coordinator Michael collected the eggs and after 7 days the eggs started to hatch.
Some of the little hatchlings can be seen in these images, 11 were returned to Alan's property.
Thank you Alan for calling WIRES and giving these tiny snakes a second chance at life.
Last August late at night when Annette was on her way home, she came across a dead wallaby on the road, she stopped and found this tiny joey in her mums pouch. Mum had been dead for some time and her joey was dehydrating and suffering from hypothermia.
WIRES macropod carers Sherryn & Dave spent the next weeks fighting to keep the joey alive giving intensive care day and night.
The joey finally responded, seen in image to the left 3 weeks after coming in to care.
Joey is now 10 months old, she is a Red-Necked wallaby and doing extremely well she will be released back to the wild in about 4 months time with other wallabies she has grown up with whilst in care.
Thank you Annette for stopping and calling WIRES.
This Bandy Bandy snake was found trapped in a swimming pool skimmer box. It was still very much alive and after a few days in WIRES care, ensuring it had no injury from it's ordeal was released back to the wild.
By Ros Glencross
I received a call from WIRES emergency roster to ask whether I could collect a flying fox caught on barbed wire from a property at Blue Knob. The member of the public had managed to release the bat and had put in a pillow case secured with string as instructed by the roster person. I was heading to Ballina and by chance Lib WIRES flying Fox coordinator was in Ballina at the time. I collected the bat, met Lib and handed it over to her care and it was given some much needed fluid
The flying fox was lactating and as there seemed to be no injuries to the animal Lib was wanting to release it back where it was found so it could hopefully be reunited with its pup.
She collected me on the way through to Blue Knob the following day, witnessed both by the rescuer and myself the Flying Fox was released. My first release!! Must say I am now hooked on flying foxes.
Images by Lisa Lucken
This adult Squirrel glider was found by Mick on his property at Cawongla caught on barbed wire. Mick carefully untangled the glider and called WIRES.
The glider was treated for a deep wound on his lower abdomen at Lismore Central veterinary clinic, then collected by WIRES carer Tina.
He was given daily antibiotic injection for some time, and after three weeks in care he is finally ready for release back on Mick's property where his colony is located.
Thank you Mick for calling WIRES.
For Andrea & family at Brunswick Heads, by Sharon McGrigor
This little Squirrel Glider was handed in to WIRES by Andrea & her family at Brunswick Heads. She weighed only 80g and was found orphaned and alone. They fell in love with her and named her Pretty Girl.
Pretty Girl was underweight and needed to be fed on a specialized diet which was supplemented with bugs.
Pretty Girl also needed to build up her muscle tone so that she could learn how to glide.
She was placed in intensive care until she stabilised and was then transferred to a large outdoor enclosure where she could learn to socialize with 2 other Gliders about her own size
Pretty Girl is now doing very well and is enjoying discovering the tastes of various barks, saps and foliage.
She will be released into the wild, in her new nest box home with her new family once she has achieved release weight.
Thanks to Andrea & her Family for passing her over to WIRES
For Pam by Sue Ulyatt
This tiny Swamp wallaby was found by Pam at Richmond Hill on 10th December 2009. There was no sign of the joey’s mother.
WIRES receives many calls for Macropod's (wallabies, kangaroos and pademelon's). Most of these calls relate to car accidents or dog attacks but in some cases, as with this little fellow, the reason for the joey being orphaned is unknown.
On arrival he was very undernourished and extremely dehydrated. He was given intensive care before he regained strength and interest in life, and he was named Phoenix.
He is approximately five and a half months old. At this stage of development he would still be in mum’s pouch, peering out as she forages for food.
As he is now fully recovered from dehydration, shock and malnourishment he spends his days in the macropod enclosure still in his pouch, not yet old enough to venture out, but it will not be long before he will as interact with the other wallabies in care and learn vital survival skills only other Macropod's can teach him.
Raising wildlife is a responsibility all WIRES carers take very seriously. Intensive training is undertaken in order to ensure all animals are given correct treatment whilst in care, ensuring the animal has the best chance of survival after release.
Raising wildlife is not like raising a kitten or a puppy that will be looked after for the rest of its life. When wildlife is released back to the wild, they have to have all the skills necessary for survival such as knowing what to eat, where to find it, and recognising predators, which includes domestic dogs and cats. They must also be able to cope with changing weather conditions, including knowing how to find shelter and water.
This little orphan has a long road ahead before his release back to the wild in nine months. He will spend this time in a large enclosure interacting with other macropod's in various stages of development. Here they learn macropod behavior from each other and skills vital for their long term survival..
Image on left 2 months after coming in to care.
By Alicia Carter for Sky
This little bandicoot was found by Sky on the way back from the Channon Markets late on Sunday night. .
Something caught his eye as he was driving along after a long day at the market so he stopped and found the dead mother.
He then noticed a little deceased sibling so he kept looking around and found this little guy, still alive. He knew one of our carers Julia was just around the corner so he whisked it over to her post haste. He weighed only 30g and had no fur whatsoever so it took around the clock intensive feeding to keep this lucky little bandi alive. Fortunately this little bandicoot is doing very well and will be released very soon.