After a few hot days, it is not uncommon for our wildlife to become dehydrated and suffer from heat stress. This is especially the case during these back-to-back heatwaves the East Coast seems to be currently experiencing.
You might notice wildlife coming down to ground level searching for water (especially possums and koalas). Birds will open their beaks or hold their wings away from their body and some animals will even have burnt feet from walking on hot tarmac or a hot roof.
THIS IS HOW YOU CAN HELP OUR NATIVE FRIENDS
- Place shallow containers of water around your garden at varying heights (remember to put a stick or rock in them so if animals fall in they can get back out again)
- Keep cats and dogs inside and supervised at all times to prevent them preying on vulnerable wildlife
- Cover your swimming pool to prevent thirsty wildlife from drowning if they fall in.
- Keep an eye out for signs of heat stressed animals.
POSSIBLE SIGNS OF HEAT STRESS IN ANIMALS
- When nocturnal animals like possums appear during the day
- When tree dwellers like koalas are on the ground
- Loss of balance
If you find an animal suffering from heat stress call your local vet or wildlife carer as soon as possible and they will be able to give you the best advice.
IMPORTANT: If you find a flying fox (fruit bat) it is vital that you do not touch it. Instead, call a wildlife carer for advice.