Townsville is home to a wide range of beautiful wildlife. These creatures often live in close proximity to our community, so it is not uncommon for us to find injured animals in need of assistance.
However, it’s important to be careful when approaching these animals (generally small mammals or birds). Knowing what to do can make a big impact on their rescue, recovery and potential release/rehome.
Approaching local wildlife
- Always consider your own safety first. Wild animals have the potential to bite, scratch or spread disease, so it’s important that you feel safe and comfortable approaching them. Ensure there are no nearby hazards such as cars on the road or other animals.
- Approach them cautiously. Baby animals may have a parent close by, who have been startled by your presence. If possible, watch from a distance to ensure they are not in need of assistance.
- For instance, it is normal for Fledgeling birds to leave their nests to explore the ground and practice flying, while their parents bring them insects to eat. Many people assume that they are trapped on the ground in need of help, but this is not always the case.
- Do not approach animals such as bats, turtles, snakes and birds of prey. They require professional care by a registered wildlife rehabilitator.
- Keep handling of the animal to a minimum in order to reduce their stress levels. A towel can help to safely grab them and make them feel secure.
- If the animal is sick or injured, you can take them to the closest veterinary clinic such as JCU Vet. We will always assist these animals and perform triage care to ensure they are pain-free and as comfortable as possible.
- If you have found uninjured or orphaned wildlife, contact the North Queensland Wildlife Care Inc. (NQWC) on their 24/7 Townsville and Local Surrounds Wildlife Number: 0414 717 374.
- NQWC is a not-for-profit organisation comprising of volunteer wildlife carers, who provide care for sick, injured or orphaned native wildlife until they are rehabilitated and can be released back into the wild.