Tag Archives: birds

Saving Wildlife Animals and Rehoming More Pets

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Our Wildlife Hospital has been really feeling the pressure. The number of native animals, birds and reptiles arriving in the last two months has doubled compared to last year. (September 2012-just over 600 compared to September well over 1200 and October 2012 just over 700 compared to October 2013 over 1500.)  It’s a worrying trend. The main reasons appear to be dog and cat attacks, fishing equipment injuries (swallowing hooks and getting entangled in discarded line), hit by cars and habitat destruction. This time of year is always more challenging because it’s when the newly born and starting to move around and find their feet and in the case of birds of course, their wings.

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The staff and volunteers at the hospital do an amazing job but sadly sometimes it can be very disheartening. If only recreational and professional fisherman would clean up their used hooks and pieces of line literally thousands of birds would be saved every year. The same goes for the family pets. Keep them inside at night-don’t let them roam.

Our Inspectorate too has been flat out. Inspector Melissa received a complaint about a dog that was very ill and suffering from a suspected tick. However when Melissa arrived at the property within 45 minutes of receiving the complaint, she found the dog at the front of the property, dead.  The dog’s owner, who had been out doing the grocery shopping, confirmed that the dog had been sick for a couple of days and that treatment had not been provided because he could not afford it and he did not believe in euthanasia. The defendant pleaded guilty in Beaudesert Magistrates Court to failure to provide veterinary treatment and made submissions to the court that he was 53 years of age and that he was the carer for his disabled wife and intellectually disabled daughter. The Magistrate took into account his early guilty plea, his cooperation, his remorse, and his financial and personal circumstances and fined him $2500. He then advised the court that he had no more animals.

Unfortunately, a week after the previous matter was heard in court, Inspector Melissa received a further complaint in relation to his property, relating to 3 cats being kept in a bathroom. When Melissa arrived with fellow Inspectors Penny and Jason they found 71 Guinea Pigs, numerous fish, budgies, pigeons, cockatiels, and a duck, as well as 5 cats, all living in terrible conditions. Many of the animals were suffering from untreated ailments. All the animals were seized but the owner subsequently signed ownership of all of the animals over to the RSPCA. This was a good result for the animals concerned as they did not have to await the outcome of court proceedings. A decision was made not to proceed with a prosecution in this matter, however we did make a separate application to the court for a 5 year prohibition order and disposal order and these orders were granted by the court.

Once again a huge thankyou to the team from Bleats, (in this case Marcin Lazinski), for proving pro bono assistance.

There was another sad but interesting case last week regarding the owner of over fifty birds.

Inspector Clare recently prosecuted a man after he was reported setting approximately 50 captive-bred Zebra and Society finches free from his aviary, only to see them all immediately killed by wild birds. He believed he was making a well-meaning decision, even though he knew there would be a percentage of loss, in particular the babies of the adult finches. If he didn’t want them any more why didn’t he try to rehome them? They were bred in captivity and had no chance of surviving in the wild.   The Magistrate said a fine of $5000 were not unreasonable. However due to the defendant’s financial and personal circumstances, he fined the defendant $1500 and prohibited him from owning any birds for 3 years. Hopefully he will never again be tempted to have birds. Once again thanks must go to Bleats, in this case Anthony Anderson, for representing us. I once again think back to when Tracy Lynne Geysen started Bleats to help us prosecute animal cruelty and neglect. All of the Barristers and Solicitors who joined have been wonderful and very generous with their expertise and their time.

Roxy

It’s time to draw your attention to some of our long term residents again. Roxy is a beautiful 2 year old brindle American Staffordshire Terrier. She has a gentle nature and used to be an indoors and outdoors dog. Unfortunately her owner’s landlord didn’t appreciate this and her owner couldn’t find pet friendly accommodation. We get so much of this! It’s really very frustrating because we have enough problems looking after the animals that aren’t wanted, let alone the ones that are loved but their owners can’t find accommodation! Roxy has been with us for 174 days and we’d love to find her a home.

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Layla is a two and a half year old domestic short hair (or Doshie as we used to call them) and has been looking for a permanent home for 263 days! Unfortunately she has cat flu which of course isn’t contagious to humans but it does mean she can’t mix with other cats. Her owner was forced to surrender her because her partner was allergic to cats. Very sad.

Bruce

Finally, (but don’t forget we have scores more animals looking for homes), we have Bruce who is a softie! He’s a four year old Mastiff and has been with us for a record 519 days! He’s been in foster care for the last year and his carer says he’s a sweet dog who sleeps on a mat in the living room when the carers are in and outside in a special crate when they go to bed. He stays in the yard quite happily when they’re at work.

Thanks to you! We did it. At the beginning of the month we set a rehoming target of 1300. Our Care Centres were chock a block and with the Christmas holidays looking things weren’t looking good. Well from November 1st through to November 30th we rehomed 1402 cats, dogs, kittens and puppies. For the same period last year we adopted 1032. Yeah! So please if you’re looking for a pet make the RSPCA your first port of call. All animals can be viewed online at www.adoptapet.com.au

Michael Beatty
@BT1949

Polly Unwittingly Saves a Life or Three

So little Polly came into care and ended up in foster at my house. As mentioned before we have the critical care area- the bathroom- but once puppies start to recover we have the day recover area- a little veranda to the side of the house where puppies can look at the big dogs but not get bothered by them; get fresh air and are safe from the resident cat who has very strong opinions about any animal that ventures into her territory. So Polly once she began her recuperation spent some time out there.

After she was well enough to go to a new foster home I was going out to the veranda to clean it up when I heard rustling in the living room. It took me a while to work it out but it appeared I had 3 birds behind the gas fire place! I am guessing the nest had maintenance issues and had fallen down the chimney taking mum; dad and a baby with them. I had no idea I had birds nesting and so I had no idea what type of bird that needed rescuing  or any real idea how to do it!

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The fireplace looked pretty much intact to me. On closer inspection I found 2 gaps at the top of the heater but unfortunately I don’t think even Harry Houdini could have bent his arm to try and grab the bird. In desperation I lowered a towel in the hope the birds would use it as a ladder to get themselves out, imagine my surprise when it actually worked!!

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I finally could see what I was rescuing- a blue faced honey eater. The bird flew around the living room making lots of squawking noise which I hoped was bird for “ climb up the towel you can escape”.  It must have been because 2 managed to get out leaving 1 behind. This bird was smaller than the others and so I was guessing it was a fledging but it was not prepared to climb the towel.

I rang the RSPCA animal ambulance for some helpful hints and ambo Jo told me to get some wire, bend it and put a pillowcase around it in the form of a make shift net and see if I could bend the wire instead of dislocating my shoulder to get behind the fire place. Eventually this also worked and bird number 3 exited out the French doors.

But what was Polly’s role in all this? Well if I hadn’t taken her home she would not have been on the side veranda; If she hadn’t been on the side veranda it wouldn’t have needed cleaning ; if the veranda hadn’t needed cleaning I would not have walked into the lounge room..and my little feathered  friends may have been there for ages.

I certainly have a whole new respect for our rescue officers who do this all the time- I also have an appointment with someone to make the chimney secure to prevent this happening again!

Anne Chester