WIRES workshop teaches wildlife rescue and care

Learn how to care for a bandicoot in distress, with WIRES. Photo: Meg Johanson.

WIRES Rescue and Immediate Care Course (RICC) focusing on wildlife rescue and immediate care education, takes place on Saturday 3 September in Coffs Harbour.

The one-day practical course is mandatory for all new WIRES volunteers wanting to start rescuing and caring for wildlife, who also are required to have completed an online theory component.

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“This last year our branch was called to attend 2,888 bird rescues,” Alice Baker, WIRES’s Coffs Harbour Bird Coordinator told News Of The Area.

“So, the morning of the course is all about birds; basic capture, restraint and transport of birds followed by how to identify the bird you have been called to rescue, physical examination, first aid and basic housing.”

Next up the Possum and Glider Coordinator talks about how to do basic rescue and immediate care.

“Our branch was called for the 391 possum and glider rescues last year,” said Alice.

This is followed by the Macropod Coordinator (Wallabies, Kangaroos, etc) who will talk about pouch checking and rescue.

“Our count for Macropod rescues last year was 418.”

Next the Small Mammals Coordinator (Echidnas, Bandicoots, etc) will discuss rescue, what to look for when you rescue, “so you don’t miss collecting any joeys”.

Flying foxes and microbats saw 300 rescued by the Coffs Harbour WIRES volunteers last year.

“Our branch is one of the few, in the state, that care and release these great pollinators,” she said.

Jody Shone, Branch President, discusses mentoring, buddying, food distribution, the role of the Species Coordinators, equipment, the Committee and its role.

The last topic is snakes, turtles and lizards, their rescue and immediate care.

There were 1,162 snake and reptile rescues last year.

WIRES offers a variety of courses, both general rescue and care as well as on specific species and advanced care.

“People can do the courses for the species they wish to provide care for.

“I suggest that a variety of courses be attended, as many people have started wanting to care for one species and later become passionate about caring for other wildlife species.

“We have a lot of passionate flying fox and microbats bat carers.

“Many volunteers have said they do not like lizards but when they see how to handle and care for them, they are the first ones out to do the rescues,” said Alice.

The local branch of WIRES is staffed entirely by volunteers, with just over 100 members servicing the area from Scotts Head to Corindi, the coastline to Dorrigo and Ebor.

WIRES volunteers rescue native wildlife, take severely injured wildlife to the local vets to be examined and receive treatment, and also care for rescued wildlife.

To enquire about volunteering for WIRES contact training@wires.org.au.


WIRES teaches rescue and immediate care of an echidna. Photo: Meg Johanson

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