Update on fire and drought-affected wildlife

Wallaby with burnt ears. Photo: Jodie Isaac
Wallaby with burnt ears. Photo: Jodie Isaac

Mid north coast wildlife rescue group, FAWNA, wishes to thank the caring community for its generosity in donations to help the region’s wildlife impacted by the current fires raging through the area.  FAWNA’s President, Meredith Ryan said “so many of these animals have been impacted by not only the fires but the record-breaking drought that has caused severe food shortages for all the bird and animal species; beekeepers are having to take their hives out of the district due to lack of pollen and nectar”

“FAWNA put out a call for help and the public response has been tremendous,” Mrs Ryan said.  We are now in a position that we will be able to arrange some wildlife food supply collection points where the public can pick up kangaroo pellets, favoured by kangaroos, wallabies and birds, and also some wild birdseed.  We expect to have this program rolling out over the coming weeks once the major roads are open and the ordered supplies can be shipped to the area.  After the Pappinbarra fires several years ago FAWNA was able to use community donations to provide a local wildlife food collection point for several months while grass and leaves grew back.  We will get more information out to the community just as soon as we can.

International Fund for Animal Welfare IFAW, and the, The Rescue Collective donations of product and goods ensured the immediate treatment to burned animals was possible.

Long term weather forecast is that drought conditions will prevail at least until the end of January. In the meantime providing water for wildlife is a way the community can help these animals suffering unprecedented shortages.  FAWNA is encouraging everyone to put out shallow containers of water for wildlife.  These containers should be cleaned and replenished regularly and should contain rocks or some means of escape so no animal can drown or get caught.  New plastic cat litter trays, old baking dishes, plastic 10-litre water containers and small drums cut in half are all cheap and easily accessible containers for the wildlife.  Safety is paramount so providing shallow containers or some means of escape is important. 

FAWNA thanks everyone for all the offers of help.  There have not been huge numbers of animals coming in and the group’s volunteers are able to manage with a big thank you to local vets and organisations who have ensured FAWNA is well-supplied with appropriate burn treatments.  Port Macquarie’s Koala Hospital emergency teams have spearheaded searches for all wildlife and the two koala groups in the Region have been run off their feet with koalas who are usually the most fire-affected wildlife species.

Mrs Ryan said, “it is just fabulous we have so many people in our community that care for our wildlife and want to do what they can to help them – it is heartwarming and makes our job that much easier”.

For all wildlife rescues in MidCoast, Port Macquarie-Hastings and Kempsey Shires call FAWNA or for koalas the numbers below and to donate to the wildlife food project or for more information on FAWNA’s work with wildlife go to www.fawna.org.au

FAWNA’s 24-hour rescue hotline on 6581 4141
Koala Hospital – Port Macquarie – 6584 1522
Koalas In Care – Taree – 6552 2183

Submitted by:
Meredith Ryan 0419 423 426
E: fawna.nsw.inc@gmail.com