CARING FOR WILDLIFE
For some of our Wildcare volunteers, caring for the ‘wilds’ of Tasmania means caring for Tasmania’s precious wildlife in one of three ways:
- Preventing harm (aiming to prevent road-kill and maintain healthy habitat)
- Supporting rescue and emergency response and,
- Rehabilitating and releasing animals back to the wild.
These efforts are supported by donations to the following causes within the Tasmanian Nature Conservation Fund:
- Keep Wildlife Safe
- Rescue and Emergency Response (donations to Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary) and,
- Wildlife Rehabilitation and Release (supporting wildlife rehabilitation volunteers).
In the last grants round, donations to the Wildlife Rehabilitation and Release cause provided equipment for volunteer, registered wildlife rehabilitators, who are amongst the hardest working volunteers we know and always in need of more support.
This is Juleen’s story of how she came to be involved in this important work, and the difference that donations to this cause have made.
HOW IT STARTED
“I had just moved from Townsville with my husband and young son in December 2019. On our frequent adventures we would usually take the road less travelled.
One day, just before the COVID lockdown, we were on a dirt road in the middle of nowhere when we came across what looked like a massacre of Eastern Grey Kangaroos on the road. I was horrified and so upset. I always think things happen for a reason but at that time I could not think of anything positive coming from that experience but it did lead to a desire to gain the skills to help more animals and took me on the path to becoming a wildlife carer.
Fast forward to April 2021 when COVID had eased, I had completed a Wildlife Rescue course and taken on a full time caring and rescuing role. As a volunteer, this role is self-funded and I always have to be careful with where I spend my money. I need to choose what is most beneficial to the animals at any given time of year.”
WHY AND HOW IT CONTINUES
“I enjoy rescuing and caring immensely and could not think of anything else I would rather be doing. Yes, it is heart wrenching to see the animals injured and in pain but knowing I have helped alleviate their suffering helps me to keep moving forward to the next one. When I successfully rehabilitate and release an animal, my heart is so full it could burst.
I wanted to do more. I wanted to take on the next stage and care for larger wildlife. When I saw that Wildcare had released grant opportunities through the Tasmanian Nature Conservation Fund, I applied and was accepted. I was thrilled because this meant I could help even more animals.
With the money from the grant, I was able to purchase a large outdoor pen and make it completely safe and secure for any wildlife that came in. Right when I was putting the finishing touches on, I received a call about a Tasmanian Pademelon needing a carer. So that is how my first resident came to be.
Lumiere (meaning light) is now enjoying his own space to grow and become wild.
This opportunity could not have been achieved if it wasn’t for the grant from Wildcare and the generous donations they receive. I am forever grateful and so, I’m sure, are the wildlife.”