Sandy Point Wildlife and the WHiSPA Project
Sandy Point wouldn’t be the same without its wildlife - koalas, echidnas, wombats, possums and other native animals, together with an amazing range of birdlife. In 2017, a group of concerned community members got together and formed the WHiSPA project (Wildlife and Habitat in Sandy Point Action project) which is about protecting our native wildlife and improving their natural habitat in and around Sandy Point.
One of the key projects run so far by the WHiSPA group is the Sandy Point Community Koala Action Project.
This project is addressing issues facing the local koala population through:
1. Collecting information to help understand the situation of our koalas
2. Involving the community in looking after koalas
3. Restoring and revegetating areas for healthy and connected koala habitat
4. Creating a community action plan for managing koalas long term.
More about the Sandy Point Community Koala Action Project
Want to help or get in touch?
Want to help out on the project, join the WHiSPA committee, or volunteer for a planting day? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Wildlife rescue and transport
Have you ever wondered what to do if you come across an injured animal on the road? Habitat destruction, drought conditions and property developments are pushing wildlife closer and closer to our houses and roads and Wildlife Victoria is receiving a record number of wildlife emergency calls. It’s worth a visit to Wildlife Victoria’s website to see their range of instructional videos on how to help with common wildlife situations.
Would you know how to check a marsupial’s pouch for surviving joeys? You can download here Wildlife Victoria’s handy guide which steps you through how to check a pouch, where to go if you need additional help and also a checklist for creating your own basic roadside wildlife rescue kit so that you're always prepared.
Dealing with sick or injured wombats
Free living wombats do not cope well in captivity as they stress and with an already suppressed immune system they usually die within days, so bringing them into care is not a realistic option. They need to be treated in the wild. Treatment for the wombat involves placing a specifically designed device at the entry to the burrow that tips medication on to the wombat as it enters after a night out. Please contact Di Cooper on 0418 336 690 to obtain a treatment kit and for information and assistance in using it.
There is a great group of experienced volunteers committed to treating mange in wombats in the wild called the Mange Management Group. Find out more at https://mangemanagement.org.au/.
How you can help us look after injured and sick animals at Sandy Point
We have a group of volunteers who have learned how to safely catch sick and injured wildlife. If you'd like to be included in the next training course, please email us at email@example.com.
We've also set up a phone list of people to help with transporting sick or injured animals from or near Sandy Point to a local wildlife shelter or a vet for treatment. Thanks to those who have already put their hands up for this.
If you'd also like to be included on this list please also contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. This is purely for transporting animals, not for catching them.
Wildlife rescue contacts
If you see sick or injured wildlife, report it to Wildlife Victoria immediately:
For wombats with mange please ring Di Cooper on 0418 336 690 or Sue Flere, Mange Management Inc - 0415197313
So what’s injuring and killing our wildlife?
Some of our wildlife have been injured and even killed by dog attacks and also by cars driving too fast around the township, so please keep your dogs inside at night and drive carefully, especially after dark when koalas and wombats are usually moving around their range.
The main focus of concern over recent years, however, has been mange. Koalas, wombats and even possums can contract mange. Wombats and possums we believe are in fact a primary source of infection for koalas. This has resulted in about 18 koalas having to be euthanised over 2016/18.
Mange is an infestation of the mange mite which burrows under the skin of an animal depositing its eggs and causing intense discomfort. If left untreated it will lead to a slow and agonising death for the animal.
If you see a koala or a wombat acting strangely, wandering around in daylight hours, or looking at all mangy, please let the contact listed below know. They will arrange for the animal to be picked up by a wildlife carer and treatment to be started immediately. Apparently time really counts for the successful treatment of this disease.
Our brochure A Guide to Living with Koalas in Sandy Point has more information about the problems affecting koalas in Sandy Point and how to deal with them.
A fridge magnet with details of who to call in a wildlife emergency is available free of charge from the Sandy Point General Store. Please pick one up and leave it on your fridge for everyone to see when needed.