A young ringtail possum lives to feed from nature.
A young ringtail possum lives to feed from nature.

The best way to rescue these precious possums

Our Australian native animals really are so cute, so taken for granted and so unappreciated by many.

Fortunately, the majority of people care for their welfare and ring our WILVOS Hotline 5441 6200 when they find injured or orphaned wildlife.

In the past week, two very small furry ringtail possums have come to me because they’ve been found out on the street in separate locations.

One was through the Australian Wildlife Hospital, the other was through the Eumundi Wildlife Centre from Hastings Street in Noosa.

How lucky were they that a concerned person picked them up, wrapped them in cosy material and made a phonecall.

Ringtail possums are fascinating little creatures and if one joey is found, then it is recommended that the area be searched for another. There are almost always two joeys, very occasionally three and even more rarely, four. Their beautiful bronze colouring and tiny compact ears, and white at the tip of the tail, make them quite different in appearance to the common brushtail possums and the short-eared brushtail possums. The latter were called mountain brushtails until a couple of decades ago when they received a more ‘descriptive’ name from the scientific community.

At this time of year, many of the marsupials are carrying young so it is always good to check their pouches.

Young joeys should never be pulled off the teat as they are attached very securely and damage can be done unless this action is done very slowly and carefully.

You may see a kangaroo, possum or bandicoot off the side of the road with coloured material or crepe paper wrapped around the neck or leg.

This is an indication that the pouch has been checked on a dead animal. WILVOS don’t recommend the use of spray paint in such circumstances, as a can of spray paint in a hot car is not a good idea.

Our sincere thanks to all those who take the time to help our native animals.

Donna Brennan Wildlife Volunteers Assoc Inc (WILVOS) PO Box 4805 Sunshine Coast Mail Centre Q 4560 PH 5441 6200 www.wilvos.org.au


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