More help needed for wildlife warriors

More help needed for wildlife warriors

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Yasmin Hunter with a Tawny Frogmouth. Photograph – Richard Polden.

The growth of suburbs is something we can’t avoid these days, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t those trying to conserve the natural environments we still have, while protecting the animals that live in them.

Darling Range Wildlife Centre has been a key centre for ongoing conservation efforts in the area for years, but they need more people who are passionate about protecting flora and fauna to become involved.

The ever-increasing border between the suburbs and the bush has meant that the group’s work has become more important than ever.

The centre’s volunteer coordinator Sue Manuel said a love of native animals is one thing, but dedicated volunteers have a whole different level of passion.

“Volunteers have to be committed, very committed, to what we’re here to do. It’s not just an opportunity to get in there and cuddle with these animals.

“These are animals that have been rescued from dire circumstances a lot of the time and our goal is to get them back into nature as soon as possible.

“That means getting them calm and independent again as soon as possible and not reliant on humans.”

“This doesn’t mean you can’t have fun, because we do. You just have to remember why you’re here.”

Ms Manuel’s job, along with the volunteers, has only increased over the years as development in the area has increased and the available foraging areas for native animals have dropped exponentially.

“You can’t deny that development has cut a lot of animals off and has left them encircled in a lot of places,” she said.

“Sadly enough animals, even native animals, often get left behind when we think about where we are going to live and that sort of thing.”

Ms Manuel said there are very simple goals she hoped people could adopt to help curb the number of native animals killed on our roads and surrounds each year.

“I urge people to think and have some empathy,” she said.

“It’s like people don’t realise that we’re sharing this area with these animals, and they have as much a right to be here as everyone else.

“So I ask people to slow down, keep an eye out and if they do see anything to contact us or a veterinarian.

“The volunteers here are passionate about getting this information out there and we’re always looking for a chance to educate others.”

For more information on how to volunteer and what to do if you find a native animal in danger, go to the Darling Range Wildlife Centre website.