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Wildlife Rescue Queensland needs our help

Story by Alistair Gray

Photographs kindly supplied by Colleen Ogilvie

I am in awe at our wildlife warriors’ work here on Bribie and in the Moreton Bay Region as they support and protect our native wildlife. These volunteers are unsung heroes prepared to venture out in the middle of the night to rescue an injured animal, quietly battling away under the radar performing this important job. Wildlife Rescue Queensland (WRQ) is largely underfunded, dependent on the goodwill of donors and volunteers and operates with little government support other than the occasional grant and desperately needs our community’s support, funding and more volunteers.

I recently caught up with well-known Bribie local Colleen Ogilvie WRQ’s Membership Coordinator, who before Christmas mentioned that they desperately needed funding for a new ambulance to transport injured animals to Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital. Thankfully, a generous local business donated a vehicle to be used as an ambulance and now they are looking for funding for a second vehicle to accommodate the great demand for Wildlife Rescue services. Businesses and other donors may also be able to assist by sponsoring the ambulance's ongoing maintenance, insurance and fuel costs.

Rehabilitating Kangaroos and Wallabies

To give readers an idea, Colleen outlined some of the work WRQ does in rehabilitating kangaroos and wallabies leading up to their release back into their natural habitat. They mainly receive calls to help macropods, eastern grey kangaroos, swamp wallabies, black striped and red neck wallabies. A huge commitment is required by carers as joeys can be in care for up to 18 months.

Hairless joeys (pinkies) are cared for in a pouch until they are big enough to be allowed out into the sunshine to strengthen their muscles and get used to the grass and surrounding environment. Macropod joeys are cared for in a creche, bonding together as they grow.

Hairless joeys are fed multiple times a day with a special formula and teat, being toileted after each feed just as Mum would do if they were still in her pouch. During this time, a joey can become ill and require an urgent trip to Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital (open 24 hours). As the joeys grow they will spend more and more time out of the pouch. To introduce them to eventually being outside 24 hours a day, they are placed into an enclosed predator-protected area where they will feed on more grass and native bush that has been collected by carers.

After this time human contact will diminish as they mature and are prepared for release into the wild. They are then moved to land bordering state forests with access to suitable feed and water. Here the ‘mobs’ gather before release into the wild surrounding areas, never to be seen again.  

Great homage and gratitude must be paid to the care and dedication of the team of carers who make all this happen for they are very special people indeed.

Possum boxes

WRQ currently has more than 50 possums (both brushtail and ringtail species) in care. They have a great ongoing need for possum boxes to house possums in care prior to their release. They currently require 80 boxes as each brushtail possum requires two possum boxes. Thanks to the financial support of Busy Fingers and with the help of the Men’s Shed Bongaree, these boxes are being made and will shortly be installed. WRQ is also working closely with Bribie Woodies to source materials for more boxes to be made.

Ringtail possums require a drey, which in the wild is normally a nest of sticks usually high up in a tree. To replicate this, Wildlife Rescue uses hanging baskets and cable ties.

When releasing possums great care is taken to ensure that suitable wild food sources are available and that the area is not overpopulated. Wildlife Rescue is always in need of suitable release sites. If you can help with possible release sites, please get in touch with WRQ (see details below).

Containers for Change

The next time you return your ‘containers for change’ please consider donating this money to Wildlife Rescue Queensland and help save our wildlife.

Hotline Operators

Wildlife Rescue needs another 10 hotline operators to handle calls and enquiries and to share the load. Currently, this workload is being shared between four amazing volunteers. Your help would mean that each operator would only have to be rostered twice per month.

No experience is necessary with full training and support provided. These rewarding roles may suit people who want to help but don't want to care directly for injured animals. Call operators can work from home and it is an ideal role for someone in a wheelchair. Your contribution will bring you much joy and satisfaction and make an appreciated contribution to a valued cause.

For more information

Please call - Moreton Bay Region 24-hour Hotline at 0478 901 801



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My name is Andrew Powell and I have had the honour of serving the wonderful people of the Glass House electorate since 2009. In its current form, the electorate includes Beerburrum and parts of Elimba

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