Not all Pelican captures require chasing a bird down the middle of the Pacific Highway, but you can learn all the basic techniques to capture and handle seabirds and shorebirds at the upcoming First Responders Workshop at Australian Seabird Rescue (ASR) on Sunday July 16.
Australian Seabird Rescue rescuers faced a hairy proposition when Geraldine, a young female pelican, who had a number of dog bites, took up a roost on a traffic island in the middle of school holiday traffic on the Pacific Highway near Tabbimobil recently. At only six months old the pelican would have been on her first visit to the coast after hatching on an inland waterway during the summer. She is now recovering well at ASR.
Acting General Manager at Seabird Rescue, Keith Williams, said ‘Geraldine is very lucky, this could have easily gone very wrong. We are grateful both she and the rescuers are safe. Anybody can learn the skills to rescue wildlife, but doing it safely, firstly for yourself, but also for the animal is the most important factor.
‘We are always on the lookout for new volunteers, so if you think you might be interested, we’d encourage you to attend our next workshop.’
Australian Seabird Rescue will be conducting eight workshops along the NSW Coast over the next year thanks to a grant from the NSW Environment Trust.
‘The grant enables ASR to conduct workshops where we currently lack volunteers, but we have big populations of coastal birds. In addition to Ballina, workshops will also be held at Ulladulla, Lake Macquarie and Coffs Harbour over the next few months.’
The Environmental Trust support enables us to offer the workshops free to participants, to revise and re-print our training materials and recruit more people to help this vital work in protecting our marine environment.