It is so IMPORTANT to call a Wildlife Rescue Group instead of trying to raise a native animal.
Today we received a call from a Member of Public (MOP) about a Joey they had picked up the previous day. They were calling because they wanted to know what to feed this orphaned Joey.
We kindly explained that it would be best to hand her over to a Wildlife Carer as she needed urgent attention. Soon realising that wasn’t going to happen, we offered to train them to be a joey Carer. The MOP hung up the phone and wouldn’t answer a call back.
Unsure what to do, we reached out to a few other Wildlife Groups to see what they’ve done in the past with an issue like this.
As it is (1) illegal for a MOP to have a joey in their care over 72 hours and (2) detrimental to the joey to remain with a MOP who didn’t even know what to feed it – we called the police and asked for their assistance.
They took the situation very seriously as it was now considered an Animal Cruelty case. We weren’t sure how long the little one would last. But within an hour of reaching out to Cairns Police, they had seized the orphaned joey and called us to collect her.
She’s now with one of our First-Responders receiving critical treatment and care. Poor bubba is dehydrated, malnourished and extremely stressed. Her name is Tinsel and we’re hoping for the best outcome. Feeling as positive as possible because she’s in great hands… but in situations like this, we just never know what the little ones have had to endure.

These animals are NOT pets or toys. They require specialised care. We encourage everyone to take this into consideration when you come across an orphaned joey (or any animal for that matter). Please do what’s best for them and call someone who has a Wildlife Rehab Permit.

TAP offers training for those who want to be a Carer or Rescuer! This is the BEST and SAFEST way to help our native animals. You can join our group by registering here for a course:


If you’re not from the Cairns area, please reach out to your local wildlife group. We can guarantee there’s not nearly enough Carers in Australia… so they’d be happy to have you if your circumstances allow it!
Thank you for reading. Thank you for understanding. And BIG thank you to Cairns Police for being so vigilant in helping. VERY proud to be part of this environmentally-conscious Cairns Community!

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