Wildlife and Bushfires
When bushland ignites, wildlife are immediately disturbed and frantic. They disperse to any location they can find that seem safe. Possums will race to the nearest safe tree, birds fly away possibly leaving young behind, and kangaroos flee sometimes on to roads and into fences. Animals may return to their familiar territories which may result in burnt feet when the ground is still hot.
How do we get involved?
While fires or embers are still burning, it is unsafe for public to enter. That also includes many of our volunteers.
In Victoria, the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP), oversee the treatment and monitoring of wildlife within the fireground area.
We monitor the edges of declared fire grounds for any animals fleeing the area that may need assistance and will intervene accordingly. If safe to do so, we will contain the animal, assess and determine if it can be released safely, needs rehabilitation, or, unfortunately, if euthanasia is required.
As each circumstance varies, the equipment, consumables and supplies we need varies. All of these items come at our own expense. Financial donations are appreciated during these times so we can replenish our stocks when needed.
How can you help?
Put out water dishes
On hot days, wildlife need hydration, just like humans. Put out a dish with water in the shade, with some sticks or rocks for small critters to get out.
Turn on the sprinklers
If there are no water restrictions in your area, turn on sprinklers to cool the ground, allowing animals a nice place to relax away from the fires and heat.
Observe and call
If you see animals looking or behaving odd, please call wildlife rescue organisations for assistance and advice.