26 Mar 2020
CARING FOR OUR WILDLIFE AFTER A BUSHFIRE
Meet Clover, a western grey kangaroo WWF-Australia supporters are helping to nurse back to health after bushfires. Carol has been nursing young Clover for months, and while the fires are now out, Clover has a long road to recovery ahead. This is Cover’s story….
Clover arrived at Native Animal Rescue from Yanchep National Park, 60 km from Perth, on 28 December. While we had full stomachs from Christmas lunch, hers was empty. This is because Clover lost her mum and her habitat to devastating bushfires. Although New South Wales and Victoria have experienced some of the largest megafires, blazes have raged across all Australian states. This includes Western Australia where 2.2 million hectares have burned.
Once orphaned, Clover lost her supply of milk and a warm comforting bed in her mother’s pouch. The only thing to fill her stomach was black sand. Scared and with burnt feet, she was close to giving up when park rangers found her. She was given immediate pain relief and was taken to the vet to have her burns assessed. After daily visits to the vet, Clover’s carer, Carole is now nursing her back to health.
Caring for orphaned animals is a tireless job. Joeys require constant care and feeding throughout the night. Many of the joeys have suffered severe burns and trauma from the fires. It can be challenging to keep their burns clean and ensure the joeys stay off their feet. Caring for them requires great patience and commitment, as joeys are often nervous in the new environments they find themselves in and must stay in care for up to two years. Without the dedication of carers from Native Animal Rescue’s partner, Wildlife Care WA, the rehabilitation of orphans like Clover would not be possible. WWF supporters are helping support these carers to ensure they can provide orphans with milk and medical dressings they urgently require.
Although Clover is healing well and has shelter and food, other bushfire affected animals do not. That’s why WWF-Australia has partnered with Native Animal Rescue to work with sick, injured, orphaned and displaced wildlife in Western Australia. WWF’s support will also go towards back feeding and water supplies for fire-affected macropods who are struggling to find food and water sources after massive areas of native bushland, forests and national parks have been scorched.
Update: Clover’s burns are now healed! As part of the next step in her recovery, she has moved into a new home with other kangaroos from the same fire zone she was found. There’s still a long journey ahead for Clover in care, but in the meantime, she’s settling in well with her new friends.
Learn more about WWF’s backfeeding work with Native Animal Rescue here.