Wildlife In Care
These critters are a small selection of the wildlife currently or recently in care at Bohollow....
This female Australian Hobby was very fortunate to be found by a local farmer working in a paddock as she was grounded, well away from any houses or roads.
She has a wing fracture but the nature and position of the fracture means that she should heal well and regain flight and hunting ability by the end of her rehabilitaiton.
She was extremely underweight when she was found and has been making up for the weight she had lost with a great appetite since arriving at Bohollow.
This is a major problem for all birds, especially hunting birds such as raptors, when they run into trouble. Birds do not carry a lot of excess body weight due to the fact that they fly and when something happens, something as simple as being clipped by a car and their only injury may be concussion, then they do not feel like hunting or foraging for a few days. By the time they feel well enough, they have lost so much weight and feel too week to hunt or forage. In the case of this little Hobby, she could not hunt for obviously, her wing injury was keeping her grounded. Even though this injury may have likely healed itself in time and healed in a way that she could have got up and hunting again, during the time that is going to take, she would have starved. She was only a day off starving to death when she was found and she was probably grounded for only 3 or 4 days. Time is essential for birds who run into trouble. They do not have much time up their sleeves at all when things go wrong. Released.
Southern Boobook Owl
This Southern boobook owl, otherwise known as a Mopoke, came into care when he was found
on the ground in a park being attacked by other native birds. He had a mark on his cere, which is the top part of the beak where the nostrils are and which is softer. He was also very concussed and underweight. Likely to have been hit by a car.
He has improved steadily to make a full recovery from the head trauma he was suffering and is now out in a flight enclosure with six other Southern boobooks, preparing for release.
When a bird of prey is grounded, for whatever reason, and left exposed, other birds tend to attack them as they view them as a very real threat. Most birds of prey will catch and eat other birds as part of their diet so other species have learnt to be wary of them and to try push them out of their territory if they get half a chance. When I am out on rescue and have to find a bird of prey which has been reported to be in trouble and catch it, I listen and watch the local birdlife. They usually give the location of a bird of prey away by their warning calls and I have often found the bird I am looking for in exactly this way. Released.
Poppy's history is unknown to us as she was dropped at a veterinary clinic who called us to take care of her and we were not told how or where she was found.
She has a very severe tail wound which we are treating with antibiotics and poultice dressings. The wound seems to be improving day by day and we are happy with her progress so far.
Poppy is a delightful little roo who seems to take everything in her stride and is an excellent patient. She accepts her tail being worked on and dressing changes without too much fuss which makes it a lot easier for us. She is being cared for at our Kotupna shelter and although she still has a long way to go with her tail wound, she will be continued to be raised with the other Bohollow joeys and go on to be released at our bushland property.
Poppy has been released successfully with another group of young joeys who have joined the wild Bohollow Mob.
Collared Sparrow hawk
This female Sparrow hawk hit a window at a local football clubroom. The people who witnessed this did not call any one for help until she was found, still in the same place laying in the grass nearby.
When I first picked her up she was suffering concussion and was very
quiet, very uncharacteristic for these highly strung raptors.
Her weight was very low which suggests she was in a bit of trouble before she hit the window and knocked herself out. She would not feed on her own due to the concussion and had to be handfed each day to make sure she didn't lose any more weight and began to slowly put some weight back on. After two weeks of hand feeding she began to stand on and tear up her own food again. She is now also up and flying again so the remaining time for her rehabilitation at Bohollow will be to get back up to releasable weight and regain flying condition. She will then be released back into her wild environment to have a second chance at making it on her own.
This sparrow hawk is a young bird, identified as such by her colour, possibly one to three years old.
Cranky Koala came to Bohollow after she was hit by a vehicle and was found on a road. Luckily, she escaped the ordeal with no broken bones but had a severe eye injury. The top of her eyelid and surrounding skin had been cut and lacerated.
We are extremely happy with how her injury has progressed and it is healing nicely. We are relieved that she has regained function of the eyelid and has vision in her eye. Her time in rehabilitation at Bohollow is almost up and she is eager to go. She just has to wait a little longer so we can be sure that no further issues will arise due to the original injury.
This little koala has been very feisty in care and has kept Deb on her toes! We will be pleased to see her get back out where she belongs.
Update: Sadly, only a week before Cranky's planned release, she suddenly crashed and didn't make it. After she died, we discovered she had suffered a massive impact to her brain which had caused the brain to actually shut down and in effect die. All the time during her care she had shown no signs of brain injury in her behaviour and there was nothing that we could have done to stop the eventual outcome. She deteriorated within 48 hours so it was a shock to lose her. One of the reasons we often autopsy critters after death and ivestigate the reasons why they did not make it is so we can determine if there was something we may have missed or could have prevented. It allows us to continually improve our care of our natives where we can and also gives us the knowledge of what we are dealing with in possible future similar cases. The name of the condition Cranky died from is called nystagmus and it usually occurs a few weeks after the initial brain injury occurred and inevitably causes death quite quickly, just as in poor Cranky's case.
RIP girl, we are sorry we could not save you.
This juvenile male Collared Sparrowhawk came into Bohollow with a fractured wing. Depending on the nature and position of a wing fracture in a bird, we can often set them correctly and the bird will go on to regain flight. Birds of prey require excellent flight ablility to be able to hunt successfully so it is vital that these birds can fly and manoeuvre well.
After a few weeks being kept confined and quiet, his wing healed well and he was moved to an outdoor enclosure to build up his flight muscles again. After a rehabilitation time of about two months, this little hawk was flying fast and manoeuvring with the agility the sparrowhawks are known for. He has been a beautiful patient and has now been soft released at our Bunbartha shelter where he continues to come in for his meal each day. He has been witnessed making a successful hunt and we hope he will eventually become totally independent again as he continues to rebuild his hunting skills and fitness. Released.
This juvenile male Wedge-tailed eagle was found not far from our Kotupna shelter when he came out of the nest a little too early. He was terribly underweight and very much still at the age where he would be reliant on his parents to feed him.
He is one of eight Wedge-tailed eagles in rehabilitation at Bohollow at the moment and has steadily regained weight and is preparing for his soft release from our Bunbartha shelter alongside a female eagle of the same age.
This bird has a beautiful bold nature and his release will be a challenge as he was so young when he came into care.
A fractured wing is not always a death sentence for a bird. It all depends on the nature of the fracture and the position.
This Willy Wagtail was hit by a vehicle and came to Bohollow with a severe wing fracture. With rest and the fracture being stabilised, the wing healed well and this little bird regained full flight. These birds hawk insects on the wing so need to be able to fly well to catch their food and also to be able to evade predators. After a few weeks being kept still and quiet for the fracture to set and heal, then a few more weeks in a flight aviary to build up strength in the wing again and regain flight fitness, he was able to be released back to his home.
Dash was found inside his dead mother's pouch. She had been hit by a vehicle and Dash, although still very much alive, did not escape without harm. The tip of his tail had
been severely damaged and was cut through bone and tendon. Our only option was to amputate the damaged tip of his tail so he endured a pretty big operation for such a little joey. His tail healed beautifully and he has grown from the tiny velvet joey we first knew him as, into an outgoing little roo with lots of confidence. His shortened tail does not hinder his movement at all and he now enjoys exercising in the roo yard with the other roos in care. Dash will eventually go on to be released at Roo Camp to join the Bohollow Mob.
Dash has been released into the wild Bohollow Mob with a group of other young joeys.
Cups was found on the ground clinging to his mother who unfortunately died in transit
to the shelter. On close inspection of the mother possum, we discovered she had been shot with an air rifle and dug out a slug from her ribcage area. Cups appeared bright and alert although terribly frightened. It took him a little bit of time to settle in and now he is happy, content and has loads of cheeky character. Cups continues his rehabilitation with the other Brushtail possums at Bohollow and will be soft released from the shelter when he becomes old enough.
Released: Cups has been released at our Kotupna shelter with his female companion who he was raised with. They are both doing well and continue to be seen on the shelter grounds.
Tippy is an Eastern Grey Kangaroo Joey who came into care after she was rescued from a tip by a tip attendant. He noticed a white chaff
bag just inside the gate with movement inside. Expecting to find kittens, he was surprised to find Tiarne (Tippy) and her dead mother. She was covered in dried pouch fluid and smelled shocking. Mum had been dead for several days. Tippy was taken to a local vet and was then handed over to Kilmore Wildlife Shelter where she was given expert emergency treatment, including sub cut fluids and eventually formula. After a couple of days and once her condition stabilised, she was handed to Deb to continue her care. She looked 'saggy and baggy' when she first arrived so Deb continued with extra fluids for a few more days. Now she is beginning to get fatter and brighter and is very affectionate and trusting. Tippy will be raised at Bohollow with the other joeys in care for another 18 months to 2 years before she will be ready for release at roo camp. After a very rough start, let's cross fingers Tippy has a long and happy life ahead of her. Tippy's story really drives home the importance, once again, of checking dead mothers for pouched young. The people who dumped Tippy's mother at the tip may or may not have realised Tippy was present but either way, the act of humans caused the death of her mother and accidently or not, almost caused Tippy's demise as well.
Update: Tippy is currently doing really well and is having short exercise sessions outside her pouch. She is growing and has a beautifully sweet character. She looks small compared to the other Bohollow roo joeys but continues to thrive.
Tippy was released with a group of young joeys her age and they have all joined the wild Bohollow Mob.