Top 10 Wildlife Calls

Wildlife Rescue Posted Dec 16, 2020
We get a lot of wildlife calls here at the RSPCA, here’s a list of the top 10 calls we receive from you and some tips to help you out
1 - I've found a baby bird, what do I do?

It’s our number one call, you’ve found a defenceless little baby bird and you rush to put a call into the RSPCA. We love that so many people want to help our tiny feathered friends, but it’s important to make sure they ARE abandoned before coming to their rescue. Falling out of the nest is often just a part of learning how to fly, so make sure the bird isn’t in immediate danger and keep an eye out for returning parents. If they don’t show up by the hour mark, then you know it’s time to put in a call to the RSPCA.

What should you look for when you’ve found a baby bird? Read more here and learn about making baby bird baskets as makeshift nests and when it’s appropriate to do so.

2 - A Kangaroo has been hit by car, what do I do?

It’s a sad fact of life in Australia that so many of our calls are for kangaroos falling foul of cars on our roads. Sometimes it seems like they come out of nowhere, so if you’re driving at night or in high wildlife areas, it’s important to stay alert to help prevent more calls like these.

If you hit a kangaroo – pull over to the side of the road and put your hazards on, ensure that you are safe at all times.  If you are uninjured and it is safe to do so, assess the condition of the roo.  If it is standing up provide the animal with space, adrenaline levels will be very high and their “fight or flight” response will be heightened.  Determine any obvious injuries and contact 1300 ANIMAL. If the kangaroo is laying on its side, if it is safe to do so, pull it to the side of the road.  Contact 1300 Animal immediately.  Keep your distance. 

If the roo is causing a traffic hazard please contact police link 13 14 44.

For more tips on avoiding collisions with kangaroos and other wildlife, read more here.

3 - There's a snake in my backyard!

Sometimes our Australian wildlife find themselves in places we’d rather they not be! From aggressive birds, to backyard snakes, wildlife relocation is a popular request here at the RSPCA. If you’ve come across an animal somewhere it shouldn’t be, it’s best to keep an eye on it, but keep your distance, and leave the wrangling to the professionals!

Learn what to do if you’ve found a snake where it doesn’t belong.

4 - A Curlew Keeps Hanging Around My Window

If you catch a curlew eyeing you through the window don’t worry, curlews are known for having a bit of an unhealthy obsession with their own reflection! Sometimes they’ll catch their eye in the glass at your home or business and decide to take up residence, which is when we get a call. It’s not the most convenient, but they will eventually move on their way. They also have a knack for making their nest in odd places.

Curlew nesting in car park

A curlew thought it would build its nest in a carpark. We showcased this quirky bird’s habits in The Biscuit Magazine, Issue 6.

5 - I've found an injured animal!

Whether it’s a collision with a car or unfortunate encounters with household pets, responding to calls about injured wildlife is part of the job here at the RSPCA.  If you come across an injured animal our Wildlife Heroes are always available to bring new arrivals to the RSPCA Wildlife Hospital. It’s a busy spot, treating thousands of incoming native patients each year.

Do you know what to do if you find injured wildlife? Check your knowledge with our wildlife quiz.

6 - There's a possum in the roof!

It’s late at night and all is quiet. Suddenly there’s a scampering coming from above and you know a possum’s taken up residence in your roof! It’s a common occurrence in the Australian suburbs, so it makes sense that it’s one of our top calls for help. If a possum keeps you up at night, it might be time to find them a new home. You can set up a possum box outside on a nearby tree and you can also possum proof your roof (once they have left the building for the day) to deter future occupants.

For tips on living with possums see our guide.

young possum on a branch

7 - There's a duckling in my pool

Any open body of water can be an appealing spot for ducks and their duckings, but if they’ve decided to call your backyard swimming pool home there’s a chance you put in a call to the RSPCA. There are ways to deter these small feathered friends: consider adding a fence or some plants to create a barrier between your pool and your lawn.

For more ways to discourage duckling visits, read our guide.

8 - I saw a koala in my neighbourhood, should I do anything?

Koala sightings aren’t as frequent as they used to be, but if you spot one in distress call us on 1300 ANIMAL (1300 264 625). As a koala’s natural habitat makes way for suburbia, you might have caught sight of a koala in a neighbourhood tree. To get more koala visitors, you can improve the koala-friendliness of your home by leaving a gap under fences and driving slowly at night. If you have pets, ensure they are secure especially at dusk and dawn when our furry icons are most active.

koala climbing up a tree

9 - There are birds in the shopping center

It might not seem like the most welcoming spot, but the rafters of your local shopping centre have seen a few bird migrations in their time. Often they’ll be happy to leave shoppers be, but if a bird is creating issues, there’s a chance someone put in a call to the RSPCA.

Find out more about bird nesting habits on our knowledgebase.  

10 - Birds are attacking a possum, can we do anything?

If the wildlife get a little too wild for comfort, it can raise a member of the public’s concern enough to give us a call.  A clash between wildlife can be distressing, but it’s often best not to intervene too closely, not all animals appreciate a (human) hand.

If you find sick or injured wildlife in need of assistance call our 24/7 animal emergency hotline on 1300 ANIMAL (1300 264 625). Our team are always happy to offer further advice for each situation.


Rebekah Roennfeldt
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