Many joeys are orphaned during the peak season for cars hitting wildlife which begins towards the end of May.
Many joeys are orphaned during the peak season for cars hitting wildlife which begins towards the end of May.

Restriction lifts could be bad for wildlife forced onto roads

WILDLIFE carers have reported fewer injured animals during coronavirus restrictions, but fear that may be about to change.

The lifting of travel limits has coincided with the start of peak season for animal road strikes.

Drivers have been urged to remain alert for native creatures seeking food and warmth on rural roads.

Granite Belt Wildlife Carers spokesman Betty Balch said the end of May was the start of the worst time of year for cars hitting animals and the period extended until Christmas.

“This is simply because the country is brown and they are moving to get more food,” she said.

The most common victims were kangaroos and wallabies and often the mother was killed and the joey rescued from the pouch.

“Last season we had more than 120 macropods in care but we also sent our guy out to euthanase quite a few others,” she said.

RACQ Club spokesman Lucinda Ross said accident claims data confirmed May was the start of roadkill season.

“Over the last three years, we’ve seen more than 1100 insurance claims come in for animal strikes in May alone,” Ms Ross said.

“Striking an animal at speed can cause huge damage to your vehicle and not only harm the animal, but potentially put you and your passengers at risk.”

Ms Ross said drivers could take several precautions including avoiding driving at dawn or dusk.

“If you can’t avoid driving at these times, make sure you always stick to the speed limit and stay aware of any wildlife which might be on the verge of coming onto the road.

“Never swerve to avoid hitting an animal.

“It can put you at greater risk of causing a collision with another vehicle or obstacle.

“If it’s safe, try and brake, and pull over and call for help if your car is damaged.”

Report injured animals to Granite Belt Wildlife Carriers on 0418 144 073.

Stanthorpe Border Post

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