ANIMAL LOVERS: Water for Wildlife volunteers; Rueben Gregory, Kirri Eb, Phaedra Gregory, Julia Kerr, Leanne Kerr, and Molly Kendall. Pic: Peta McEachern
ANIMAL LOVERS: Water for Wildlife volunteers; Rueben Gregory, Kirri Eb, Phaedra Gregory, Julia Kerr, Leanne Kerr, and Molly Kendall. Pic: Peta McEachern

Wildlife saviours safeguarding our local animals

A VOLUNTEER group has sparked up in Chinchilla with the aim to help wildlife struggling during extreme drought conditions.

By implementing water dispensers around town made from PVC pipes that are accessible to an array of species big and small – Water for Wildlife’s goal is to reduce the number of animals dying from dehydration, and the task of finding carers for emaciated wildlife.

Past wildlife carer and founder of Water for Wildlife Chinchilla Phaedra Gregory knows a thing or seven when it comes to looking after our native wildlife, and said animals are struggling in the area due to dry conditions.

“I’ve seen a lot of animals suffering from dehydration, I’ve picked up and delivered a lot of wildlife in the area to carers outside of the area … for dehydration problems,” Ms Gregory said.

“Because there aren’t a lot of carers in area, there is no one that specialises in koalas, so I have to ship them three hours away for treatment.

“If the hydration issues were addressed it would be saving a lot of animals.”

Ideally Ms Gregory said she would like to see the water dispensers 2km away from built up areas so that animals aren’t being lured into town away from their natural habitat.

“They might get injured as there’s more cars and activity in town,” she said.

“It’s important so we can try to sustain the robust wildlife that it clinging to life because a lot have died from dehydration, and starvation already.

“We have lost so much wildlife in Australia because of these fires – I know we are in Chinchilla, but we have lost so much wildlife in Australia in the last couple of months that I feel what we have left is important to look after.”

Ms Gregory said Water for Wildlife is looking for more volunteers to pitch in and help however they can, whether it’s donating PVC pipes, elbows, PVC glue, and ends or refilling water stations.

“Donations of time, effort, product, but not donations of coin (yet) are more than welcome,” she said.

“Finding people to help build them, finding people to put them out, and farmers to accept having them on their property … they can make a pipe themselves and maintain that pipe at the front of their property if they wish.

“It’s important to stress that it’s only important to keep these water dispensers going while there is no water.

“Once we start getting decent amounts of rain and waterways replenish, they don’t need to be maintained – it’s best that they go back to their original place of water.”

Those looking to get involved can head to the Facebook group: Water for Wildlife Chinchilla QLD.