Chloe and Joey Meet a Very Wise Kiwi

    ~  by Menkit Prince


Wildlife Carers Helping Kangaroos

Ann nurses little Euro

Her email is

Copyright by Kathleen McLaren

Wildlife carers who rehabilitate kangaroos are very special people - a rare breed in themselves. So many joeys (baby kangaroos) find themselves orphaned when their mother is killed. Of course many die in her pouch from injuries sustained or simply because nobody finds them and they die of dehydration and starvation. The lucky ones are found and taken to a wildlife carer who knows how to care for kangaroos.

Many wildlife carers can care for possums, koalas, wombats, reptiles, birds etc but do not know how to care for kangaroos. Kangaroos have a very specialised diet and can die from gut complications if given the wrong formula, for example. They are extremely stress-prone and can die from shock alone. Young joeys need to be fed every 4-5 hours around the clock meaning carers do not get uninterrupted sleep for many months. The carer must sterilise the bottles, make the formula, feed it to the joey, toilet them wash the pouches they sleep in many times a day and also provide supervised playtime outside in a fully enclosed pen. At any age a joey can be taken by an eagle, python or fox not to mention feral dogs who dig under the fencing. Their enclosed yard must be free of kangaroo poop as this can cause gut problems if they eat the grass near the poop.

Vet bills are very expensive as is the milk formula. No government agency compensates carers for their expenses. Since many of them are on a pension and don’t have a daytime job (which would stop them from being able to rehabilitate kangaroos), most of them are struggling financially and can barely feed themselves after caring for the kangaroos.

It can take 18 months to get the joey to the point where he/she is ready to be released and cost $2,000 each. That is why the author and illustrator and most of everyone else involved in creating this book want all the proceeds to help them.

Below is a list of needy macropod carers who will be receiving proceeds from all the sales. If you want the money from your purchase to go to one in particular, please indicate that at the time of purchase. Please feel free to make random donations to any of them. I am sure they would be most grateful. If you know any other worthy carers struggling financially please contact us.

Steve and Rosemary Garlick run Possumwood Wildlife Recovery & Research Centre in south east NSW. This is a self-funded facility that helps in the recovery of severely injured macropods and wombats.  Around 150 to 200 animals come to the facility each year for treatment and recuperation before returning to the wild in a safe location for a second chance at life.

Rosemary and Steve have particular expertise in the recovery of fence injured kangaroos and those with fractured limbs, pelvic injuries, head injury, wounds and various illnesses. They also have access to an excellent specialist wildlife veterinarian. Animals of all sizes are taken in and around 100 are translocated and have a graduated release back to the wild each year.  Steve and Rosemary also undertake research into wildlife illness, injury and rehabilitation as well as wildlife emotion, and ethics.

See some of their wildlife stories here at

For close to 40 years, Terri Eather has been caring for injured and orphaned wildlife. This Angel of  Australia is one of the most respected wildlife carers in this vast country. Spending a day with Terri at her Cornubia home gives you a fair idea of why this disability pensioner is the backbone of saving a plethora of native animal species.

Little "Butterfly" is her latest joey to be in her care...yet another orphan who has lost their precious mother to an uncaring driver who didn’t stop to attend to this vulnerable baby. With feeds every few hours, sleep is a luxury, but Terri would never stop being a foster mother to our furry friends as well as any sick, injured or orphaned wildlife that crosses her path.

Having spent her working life as a police officer seeing the most horrific acts of human depravity and violence and where she was hurt on duty, Terri says she could handle that ... what she can't handle is the barbaric cruelty inflicted on those that cannot fight back and has seen many animals who were beyond her care because of a sickness in society today.

She counts Bob Irwin as a dear friend having known him many years because of her voluntary work back in the day that saw the beginning of Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital and was there sitting quietly in the stands when the big boy in khaki was farewelled by the world...another dear friend and one she misses deeply.

With calls coming in from every corner of Australia, this Angel takes it all in her stride giving medical advice akin to something heard in an E.R. room. The main difference is there is no wage for Terri, no grants, no government funding and paying for everything out of a disability pension leaves this proud lady scraping for coins most weeks. Terri jokes, she tries to pay for things with Koala Food Gum Leaves!

Her acreage in Cornubia is her sanctuary and when contacted about the hoons speeding up and down outside her home, a local Logan City Councillor wrote to residents requesting they please drive slowly and quietly in the immediate areas as stress from noise can kill wildlife. There also were two 1800 high steel signs in the ground with steel posts and unbelievably, one was stolen and police believe it would have taken the perpetrators over an hour to break the steel post so the sign could be removed. Patience is something Terri has bucket loads of as unfortunately drivers still speed and the hoons are still driving with excess noise. Some lovely neighbours do occasionally bring her injured wildlife also.

Without Terri, there would be far few koalas, roos, birds, lizards, snakes and a range of other native animals able to live another day in their natural habitat...her love is felt in the Aussie bush through and through.

A very dedicated older couple who sold their home to raise funds for the kangaroos. They now live in a small very cold caravan far from Bathurst near a national park with no electricity. They spend all their pension money on the care of joeys as well as on petrol to patrol the roads checking dead kangaroos’ pouches. It’s a perfect situation for the injured kangaroos but not for them. A small group of people in the area are trying to raise funds to help them, but it’s never enough.

Guardian of the Morisset kangaroos’. When she is not tending to animals in the wee hours, Mrs Howley spends her days picking grass for her kangaroos, warming hot water bottles, making splints for broken animal limbs and spending her money on heating and milk for joeys.

Last month the carer, who turns 70 next year, spent $560 on milk for joeys in her care. Mrs Howley has been a Native Animal Trust volunteer for 30 years since the death of her husband Geoff in 2010. Mr Howley modified the Marmong Point property, including building the possum aviaries and the kangaroo compounds, so Margaret could continue her work.

‘‘He provided everything to make my job so easy and wonderful. Together we worked out how to manage the big eastern grey kangaroos. I’ve got a soft spot for them ... they are the hardest to raise.’’ She maintains the most satisfying part of caring for animals is releasing them back into the wild.

‘‘No matter how much they like having a full tummy and getting a tickle under their belly, they really want to be free,’’ she said.

‘‘Even though I might cry my eyes out sometimes, because some animals are just special, you still want to give them back their life.’;jsessionid=1C8E22A6A96324DB0DB9D8A9C88620D6?sy=afr&pb=all_ffx&dt=selectRange&dr=1month&so=relevance&sf=text&sf=headline&rc=10&rm=200&sp=brs&cls=2345&clsPage=1&docID=NCH120702EP4IQ7JLTEO

Corna Viljoen lives with her family renting the Water Board’s property, near Calliope, (Queensland) where she raises many macropods and possums and releases them into the natural bushland that surrounds her.

Her management and care of orphaned and injured wildlife is so outstanding, that she will be carrying on the legacy of Lynda Staker while she is overseas.

Corna will be conducting Lynda’s courses and also selling her manuals.

WITH a brood of 50, Ann Pashley's family is anything but average. For the past 22 years, she has dedicated her time to hand-raising kangaroos in the Adelaide Hills. She acts as a saviour for joeys left orphaned by car crashes, and nurses injured roos back to health.

"They're like my children," Mrs Pashley, 68, says. "It's absolutely a joy to successfully raise a joey - I think I'm the luckiest person in the world."

Mrs Pashley's joeys were used for photo opportunities for Tour Down Under cyclists, which she said was an exciting experience for the visitors.

"We thoroughly enjoy it, and the cyclists get a real buzz out of it," she says.

A usual day for Mrs Pashley includes waking up during the night to feed joeys, feeding all the kangaroos during the day and responding to calls to injured animals and from carers looking for help. She said she got attached to each of the kangaroos, and cried when any of them died.

Mrs Pashley, fundraising co-ordinator for Native Animal Network, said the organisation placed joeys only in homes where they could be kept for their entire lives.

"Most people only want the babies," she said. "But they really get attached like dogs so they should be kept for life."

Yvette Hansen is an excellent carer, however she has had all types of misfortune in the past year and has had to endure caring under the most unreasonable regime in her area, which has made her caring for orphaned wildlife extremely difficult. Yvette and her husband have fallen on very hard times and are moving to another area, in the hope that they can get back on track to be in a position where they can resume caring for wildlife again.

The calibre of a wildlife carer such as Yvette will be wasted if she cannot get back into the position of caring for injured and orphaned macropod joeys, possums and wombats.

She is currently living in the Cowra region.

Phyllis Facey lives in Beverley in Western Australia and is another excellent carer. She is currently trying to raise $50,000 to rescue some red and western grey roos that used to be used by Cohuna Wildlife Facility to bring in tourists, and when they moved out they left these unsterilised roos to breed up.

The people who took over the facility turned it into a Black Cockatoo rescue centre so most of the money goes to the cockatoos. Meanwhile the roos they inherited have kept on breeding. The Department of Environment will not allow the roos to be released so there are only 2 options: one to castrate the males and the other to shoot them. Phyllis would not be a part of the second option so she is trying to get the first option off the ground.

She has spoken to a professional roo relocator who has had many years of sedating roos and also her vet who has quite a few years of experience with roo handling. They have both agreed to help once she has money. She is going to look at $15,000 lots and get 10 done at a time, it will take longer but it won't seem so hard. Dion will put ear tags in so we know which ones have been done and a history will be recorded for each tag with age and other details so for the first time these roos will be numbered and health checked. They have an ideal property for the roos to be relocated.

These roos and descendants have lived in this 8 acre pen for 30 years which is why the DEC won't allow them to be released as they are inbred.

Phyllis said: “It makes me so angry that these roos were used to make money from tourists and then allowed to be abandoned like trash”.

Phyllis is currently feeding the roos with hay etc. Phyllis is the kind of person who will pay for other carer’s veterinary procedures, because she couldn’t bear a kangaroo not having a chance at recovery. She is not a rich lady!

Pam is a full-time Wildlife Carer. She is the owner/operator of Wildwood Wildlife Shelter, a 700 hectare property and has numerous joeys and older greys in care at all times. Pam is intensely passionate about the environment and our native wildlife, particularly kangaroos. She is an amateur photographer who hopes to inspire all who view her images to see the wildlife as she sees them. To see their true beauty, to understand that they too have a right to a life free of suffering and persecution. Lives in Grampians, Victoria.!/pages/Wildwood-Wildlife-Shelter/155429884497277

For over 20 years, Stella and Alan have dedicated their lives, and their home, to caring for injured and orphaned wildlife. It’s not a hobby, it’s not a distraction from the mundane rigors of life - it’s a lifestyle they chose because of their unshakeable passion and compassion for our native wildlife. There’s nothing that could stop this dedicated couple from providing sanctuary and care for any animal, bird or reptile that needed it.

In 2009, on Black Saturday, their world was changed beyond recognition. Many would have given up after the devastating fires ripped through their Victorian wilderness. They lost their home and all their buildings were razed to the ground. Stella was on a fire truck putting out a fire at her neighbour’s home when it happened. She returned to complete annihilation of the life she knew. Instead of crumbling, she and Alan rebuilt their shelter and home in spite of the fact that they lost over 800 animals. This process took two and a half years but now they are back to where they started, determined to do their best for our wildlife. They still need help.


Steve and Rosemary Garlick
Terri Eather
John and Sandra Lyle
Corna Viljoen

Wildlife Rescue and Care

Ph 0412 561215

Bank account details

Wildlife Rescue and Care

BSB # 084-273

Acc #  79 501 8123

Margaret Howley
Ann Pashley
Yvette Hansen
Phyllis Facey
Pam Turner - Wildwood Wildlife Shelter
Stella and Alan Reid

Donations can be made to:-

The Wildhaven Trust

c/- Commonwealth Bank

Diamond Creek Vic 3089

BSB 063 594

Account 1029 7a821

CTBAAU2S (Swift Code)

Native Animal Volunteer Trust - (0418) 628-483

Dr Howard Ralph

This retired veterinarian operates Southern Cross Wildlife Care in Mona Vale and Goulburn full-time which treats more than 2,000 native animals every year. Carers ring him from all over Australia for advice. He has been treating native animals for 30 years and before he retired treated them after hours. He won an award from International Fund for Animal Welfare for outstanding veterinary services, having helped without pay the animal victims of the Black Saturday tragedy in Victoria in 2009. He was also a finalist in the Pride of Australia Awards.

Annual overheads are over $200,000 (medication, drugs, food, bandages, cages, rent and travel expenses) and he gets no government or corporate funding and is struggling to meet these costs as he works for free. He and volunteer carers give their time and money to help wildlife.  His centre is in desperate need of funding.