Living in a area of rich biodiversity, the Northern Rivers Wildlife Carers (NRWC) rescues and rehabilitates a large range of animals, some of which are rare or threatened and you might not ordinarily come into contact with, says Kate Geary, who is a training officer with the group.
They rely on a wide range of volunteers to give their time to raising rescued wildlife and running the organisation.
‘There are many roles within the organisation, and something to suit just about anyone who is passionate about native wildlife,’ continued Kate.
‘If you have lots of time for caring roles that’s great, others contribute by doing rescues on the days when they know they will be available, provide transport to/from vets and carers, serve on our hotline, or feed baby flying foxes orphaned during heat events.’
The first step to getting involved is doing the basic training, which gives you an understanding of how to undertake a rescue and assessment of an injured or orphaned animal and learn about the different roles within the group.
‘We care for a lot of birds, also possums and gliders, echidnas, bats, reptiles and wallabies.’
The next basic training will be on Sunday July 30, 9.30am–3pm in Lismore. The cost of $35 includes morning tea and membership.
Kate has had the opportunity to raise a number of wild animals and release them into the wild.
‘I hand raised the mountain brush tail possum in the photo. When he first came to me he would fit in the palm of my hand and now, several months later, he weighs about 1.5kg and is almost ready for release.
‘I also raised a little tawny frogmouth that came to me as a tiny bundle of fluff and a big open mouth. When he was ready to be released we spotted him around the place for a few days, in unlikely places such as neighbours’ swing sets, mowers and attracted by the lights of late night ping pong games. Then we didn’t see him/her again. The following spring he/she turned up again, built a nest and had a family within view of my front window. That made my heart swell.’