Did you know that there are actually TWO SPECIES of BRUSHTAIL POSSUMS in the Toowoomba Region?
This cute photo below shows a good comparison of two species of orphaned brushy joeys. On the left is the Short-eared Mountain Brushtail Possum (aka Bobuck) (Trichosurus caninus) and on the right is the Common Brushtail Possum (Trichosurus vulpecula).
The Short-eared Brushtail requires different care & diet than a Common Brushtail as it gets older, and has a very long time in care and requires a long-term commitment from its carer.
The Short-eared Brushtails are mostly found in rainforest vegetation and locally are seen on the escarpment of Toowoomba, Highfields and Ravensbourne to name a few areas.
Common Brushtail Possums are found in all habitats including dry and wet forests, inner suburbs and at times in ceilings!
Please remember that if you come across a deceased possum or marsupial, to take the time to check its pouch for a joey and call for help from your local wildlife carer group, the rspca wildlife helpline 1300ANIMAL or take the possum to your local vet for assistance. These two possums were saved because of quick-thinking members of the public.
10YEARS AGO TODAY ... 10th January 2011... THE TOOWOOMBA FLOODS
10 years ago our region experienced devastating flooding - it’s hard to summarise an event like that . Leading up to this day- the heavy rain began on 19th of December and seemed to just keep coming. During this time I started to get a lot of birds in care that were either ‘waterlogged’ or hungry and struggling from not being able to find food. I had 10 baby Magpie Larks (Peewees) in care as their mud nests had all gone to slop and they kept being found on the ground, along with tawny frogmouths and a baby Galah. Many carers also had a lot of birds and rain affected animals.
From the actual floods however, we expected a lot of wildlife to require emergency care- but this was naive thinking on my part, having never experienced wildlife rescue in a natural disaster before, my expectations of animal survivors was unrealistic.
We were flooded in at our property for 2 days due to our normally dry creek flooding the road. Once it was clear on the 12th, Brendon immediately packed all his tools and equipment to go volunteer in the clean up at Murphy’s Creek and that’s where he would be for the next few months. Tony & Maree also went to Murphy’s Creek to volunteer helping organise emergency electrical work and also did this for a very long time. Most people we knew were doing something to help honestly.
For me at this time, My children were still young and I had been volunteering with my friend and wildlife mentor Clare, one to two days a week. I knew she would have been finding it hard getting branches for the koalas as they still need to eat despite the weather, and there aren’t any supplement foods that you can give! I set about cutting as much fodder as I could fit in my car from our own property and my children and I took it over to Clare to feed the 3 koala babies. At the time Clare never shared her wildlife work online, however she gave me permission to share these adorable photos of her three babies on my Facebook profile - as something to cheer people up during such an emotional time. I am re-sharing the photos on this anniversary as they still make me smile and remember her and how grateful I was for her trusting me and the experiences she allowed me & my family to be a part of- she changed my life for the better.
On this day we not only remember all of the animal lives lost, wildlife and domestic, but the human lives and families changed forever from this tragedy. Our daughter sadly lost one of her special kindy friends along with her friends dad... words can’t describe the awful devastation that occurred.
The couple of flood photos in this post were taken by Brendon on the morning on the 10th in Toowoomba. Locals will recognise these locations.
Let’s pray we never experience something like this again.
SPECIES: Brushtail Possum, Adult Female and Back-rider juvenile
RESCUE DETAILS: Rescued by C Walker, TKWR at Mt Lofty Toowoomba, 9 January 2021
HOSPITAL/VET: Herriot House Vets
REHABILITATION DETAILS: Rehabilitation by C Walker, Toowoomba Koala and Wildlife Rescue
RELEASE DETAILS: January 2021, Mt Lofty
Fire crews performed a delicate rescue at Toowoomba this morning after a possum and her baby both got their heads stuck inside a skip bin at Mt Lofty. It took them more than an hour to free her. The possum was checked over by wildlife carer
Carol Walker from Toowoomba Koala and Wildlife Rescue and wasn’t seriously injured.
ANIMAL NAME: Crusoe
SPECIES: Koala (Adult Male)
RESCUE DETAILS: Rescued by B Gray, TKWR, Geham Qld, November 2020
HOSPITAL/VET: RSPCA Wildlife Hospital Wacol & Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital
RELEASE DETAILS: January 2021, Geham Qld
MEET 🐨 KOALA “CRUSOE” (aka Robinson Crusoe)
🌳 Brendon rescued this koala back in mid-November. The rescue was high and challenging to say the least and I don’t have any photos of the situation as Maree and I both had our hands full holding the ladder and passing up equipment.
🏥 The koala had early stages of chlamydial conjunctivitis and we knew that if we could get medical intervention sooner than later- he would have a good chance at recovery.
🐨 “Crusoe” was a big male koala and he was successfully medically treated with joint care efforts between the Rspca & Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospitals. Yesterday we had the pleasure of returning him back to his home.
🙏 Thanks to wildlife carer Samantha for assistance with transport, and to Jan and Tim the property owners for providing such a wonderful safe habitat for wildlife on their property. Jan is a wonderful wildlife photographer and sent me this great photo comparison image of before and after.
Good luck “Crusoe”
SPECIES: Magpie Lark (juvenile fledgling)
RESCUE DETAILS: Rescued by K Gray, Kleinton
REHABILITATION DETAILS: Rehabilitation by Toowoomba Koala & Wildlife Rescue & Tiny Haven Wildlife Sanctuary
RELEASE DETAILS: TBA
This juvenile Magpie Lark (aka Pee Wee) was rescued by Kirra & Jasmine on New Years Day, after being found on a residential street, away from any trees or obvious places where the mud nest may have been, making reuniting impossible. It was still very small, and being out in the hot sun, on the bitumen road on its own, it wouldn’t have lasted long, so it was very lucky to be rescued!
It has adapted well in care and on weigh in today he is now 45 grams!!
Now that he is ‘out of the woods’ we hope to find another carer with similar sized birds that it could be raised and then released with eventually . In the mean time he is keeping us busy with its regular feeds.
Big thanks to Kaehla from Tiny Haven for accepting this little Magpie Lark to be raised & released with others she had in care.
Male koalas are on the move and looking for love, as the koala breeding season begins in the Toowoomba Region. September through to February is the local koala breeding season and during this time, koalas in search for prospective mates can be seen in unexpected areas and are likely to be found crossing roads at unusual times of the day and night, entering people’s back yards and getting caught in dangerous situations. With this increased movement comes the higher risk of car trauma and dog attacks.
Increased koala movement during this time, is a natural part of the koala life cycle but due to increasing fragmentation of habitat, koalas often end up travelling along the ground and walking longer distances more than usual to find the next suitable habitat or mate. In the greater Toowoomba Region, there are now more people now living in koala habitat areas and they are a lot more likely to encounter each other during this time.
It is during this time is also when we see young juvenile koalas leaving their mothers and having their own independence, migrating into new and unfamiliar territories looking for their own place to live as they explore new areas. With this greater movement of young inexperienced koala populations, the public need to take care by making sure that their yards are koala friendly and keeping pets inside at night and abiding to speed limits on the roads and taking notice of wildlife crossing and awareness signs in areas where koalas are known to frequent.
Toowoomba Koala and Wildlife Rescue are urging the community to be mindful of the increase in koala activity during this time to make sure that no more koala lives are lost while looking for love.
Should you find a sick, injured or orphaned koala in the Greater Toowoomba Region, please phone 0458 155 177 or the RSPCA on 1300 264 625
On this website and facebook page for Toowoomba Koala and Wildlife Rescue, we choose to share the brighter side of volunteer wildlife rescue and rehabilitation. Sometimes when we don't have any updates to share, it is not because we aren't rescuing or helping wildlife, but rather because we choose to keep the sad rescue stories to ourselves. We feel that there is enough depressing news in the world without us adding to the stories. I do wonder though at times, if this is wise, as it may portray an unrealistic view of what wildlife rescue really entails and what we (wildlife carers everywhere) deal with on a regular basis.
There are often stories of wildlife rescues and particular animals, that I feel should be shared, despite their outcome, but this is something I have mostly refrained from doing to avoid anyone else being greatly distressed by the situation as we were. Australian people and its wildlife has suffered so much in recent times, with the long drought, dreadful bushfires, extreme weather conditions and now with humans dealing with the covid19 pandemic. We feel that by sharing positive stories and updates on how our animals in care are going, that this can brighten peoples day and prevent everything they see on social media being depressing.
The reality though, behind the scenes, is that we are still seeing the affects of a long drought with koalas in terribly poor condition requiring rescue on a regular basis. Koalas are still suffering from horrific domestic dog attacks and road trauma and others are suffering from distress and displacement from mass tree clearing in our region. We are already witnessing koalas losing their pouch babies due to these reasons and that is very distressing, especially for carers given the tough task of trying their best to save compromised tiny animals.
Going into winter now, we are approaching mating season for Echidnas which are on the move and are crossing roads more than normal. We have echidna specialists in our region, so please get in contact for a referral should you find one that you are concerned about.
While reptiles are heading into the brumation period, they are still venturing out into the sun on warmer days and being clipped by cars or attacked by dogs.
Kangaroos and wallabies are coming to the road edges to eat to look for a little bit of green as the grasslands dry out, and they are then susceptible to car trauma. We have already had numerous tiny pouch joeys being found alive or injured after their mothers have passed away.
Baby birds are still appearing after a particularly warm autumn season and they are being found blown out of nests onto the ground on windy days. Re-uniting them with their parents is the best option, but at times this isn't possible and they need to come into care.
Koalas are now at the end of mating season, but pouched babies are starting to appear. Please report any sick, injured or orphaned koalas to us as soon as possible. Small orphaned koalas should not be left to "fend for themselves" should they be found without their mother. There are various experienced and licenced koala carers in our network who can help raising them for successful return back to the wild.
Thankyou to everyone for your continued support and words of encouragement on the Facebook Page, it really means a lot to us. We are very grateful to have a wide network of wildlife carers, vets and rescue volunteers to network with and we continue to meet more people in this field all of the time, which is wonderful.
Toowoomba koala and wildlife rescue - koala awareness road signage project
One of our projects this year has been to secure appropriate temporary signage that we can install (and later remove) in areas where koalas have been seen crossing roads or narrowly avoiding being hit by cars, where no permanent wildlife or koala signage exists.
The signs are temporary and placed in a safe location (abiding to road advertising/ signage rules) to inform drivers and members of the public to take care in these particular zones, where they may not expect a koala to emerge onto the road. Similar signs have worked well in other regions and are used by Wildcare and Gympie Koala Action Group and they are also similar to the Cassowary sighting signs used in North Queensland. We also have some other informative signs for koala and kangaroo road trauma, which are a little more confronting. So far signs have been used at Highfields, Goombungee, Flagstone Creek, Meringandan, Murphy's Creek and Geham.
We are very grateful for the advice given by other Koala groups and the supplier details to have these signs printed at an affordable rate. We also appreciate members of the public letting us know about any koala incidents or crossing they have witnessed.
Unfortunately we are still witnessing regular healthy koala deaths & injury from road trauma - particularly on the New England Highway in between Cabarlah and Crows Nest in the Toowoomba Region.
Should you find a injured, sick, orphaned or under-threat Koala, please phone the RSPCA Wildlife Hotline on 1300 ANIMAL (1300264 625) to be put in touch with an experienced local koala rescue volunteer. To Report local crossings/sightings please message us through this page or on Facebook Messenger for immediate response. m.me/toowoombakoalarescue
Toowoomba Koala and Wildlife Rescue
HOW TO CELEBRATE WILD KOALA DAY - 3rd May 2020
Founded in 2016, Wild Koala Day returns in 2020 as a program of national community events, made possible through the collaboration of organisations and individuals committed to the conservation of wild koalas, and the education & empowerment of their human neighbours. This year in 2020, however the organisers have had to "think out of the box" with the current Covid19 restrictions in-place, and so some creative ideas have been put together as a way to still celebrate and support wild koalas in Australia.
Toowoomba Koala and Wildlife Rescue are proud to be a part of this event and we have compiled some of our own suggestions as well as those from the World Koala Day Committee below that you can easily do from home to feel like you are participating.
5 WAYS HOW TO CELEBRATE WILD KOALA DAY 2020 FROM HOME
For full list of official Wild Koala Day Activities please visit: http://www.wildkoaladay.com.au/
Happy Wild Koala Day 2020
Thankyou for your ongoing support of Koalas in the Toowoomba Region.
Toowoomba Koala and Wildlife Rescue
HOW TO MAKE AND DECORATE KOALA CUPCAKES
I have decorated these koala cupcakes a few times now to take to different wildlife events or get-together's with other wildlife carers. They are super easy, not expensive to make and very tasty despite having grey icing! They are a lot of fun to make and perfect to make to celebrate Wild Koala Day or any special occasion. Perfect for the kids to decorate themselves also. N.B. The recipe can be easily adjusted to suit food intolerance's by using gluten free or vegan alternatives in the cake, milk, chocolate options etc as you normally would.
MAKE THE CUPCAKES (Option 1 - Easy Version- Packet Cake Mix)
MAKE THE CUPCAKES (OPTION 2 - Make Cakes from Scratch)
VIENNA CREAM ICING (Rich and fluffy and easy to ice and add colour to)
HOW TO DECORATE YOUR KOALA CUPCAKES
We would love to see how your cupcakes turn out to tag us on social media! #toowoombakoalaandwildliferescue @toowoombakoalaandwildliferescue
You can support orphaned, injured and sick koalas during their rescue and rehabilitation HERE
Find out more about Wild Koala Day on 3rd May HERE
Happy Baking & Thank-you for loving our Koalas!
Toowoomba Koala & Wildlife Rescue
Judi Gray - Toowoomba Koala and Wildlife Rescue