The staff at Arid Recovery were lucky to have a very cute visitor in the office recently. James, the joey kangaroo, was brought in to us by a local truck driver, when his mother ran into the side of the truck. Although the staff at Arid Recovery do not have the training to care for injured wildlife, or the permits, we took him in for several hours until someone was able to. Which raised the question for us, what is the best thing to do when you find a joey or other injured and neglected wildlife?
"James" the joey who spent the morning in the Arid Recovery office until we were able to get him help.
We spoke to a representative from Fauna Rescue SA, on the most important things you can do when you find a joey.
- Joeys are usually in shock- you would be too if your mother had just passed away. The best thing to do is to give them warmth, either wrapped in an old towel or jumper and pressed up against your body. If available a hot water bottle is useful, or a wheat bag warmed up. Be sure to wrap these in a towel first though, direct contact with the animal can burn or overheat them.
- Keep their surrounds quiet and dark. Joeys will often get diarrhoea when stressed so the best thing to do is turn the radio down or a quiet room away from people and cover their head loosely with an old sheet or blanket. You will find most will shy away from light, and try to “snuggle” into the bag or blankets you have them in.
- Do not feed the joey milk. The lactose in dairy makes them extremely sick, and can kill them. Wombaroo have developed food products for a range of animals, including milk replacements for kangaroos at all stages of development. These can be found at local veterinary surgeries, pet food stores and online.
- Once you have the animal settled, the next best thing to do is call your local wildlife carer. Your local council or veterinary clinic will sometimes have these details, or you can contact Fauna Rescue South Australia and they will be able to provide you with guidance and details on your closest carer.
The three basic principles for any injured or neglected wildlife is warm, dark and quiet. If you are not a qualified carer, the best thing to do is get the animal to the closest carer to ensure their survival. For more information on caring for joey kangaroo’s, or any other Australian wildlife, visit the Fauna Rescue SA website at www.faunarescue.org.au .