Wildlife carers are traumatised after a juvenile kangaroo was found with horrific injuries, they believe were deliberately inflicted, at a South Coast caravan park last week.
Wildlife carer Rae Harvey believed the young female roo appeared to have been attacked with a machete, suffering shocking facial injuries.
The roo was found at Murramarang Resort on Thursday, May 3, and WIRES Mid South Coast volunteer Janelle Renes said she had probably suffered for almost 24 hours.
Ms Renes believed an attacker had sliced open the kangaroo’s face and left her to suffer until resort staff found her. She said the incident was the worst she had encountered.
“She was lying there and just the look on her face and the damage; she basically had her face sliced open and her snout and teeth were missing,” Ms Renes told the Bay Post/Moruya Examiner.
“It was horrendous. I tried to get close to her so I could console her; I just sat with her until police arrived, to keep everyone away.”
Police had no option but to euthanise the animal. Ms Renes said the incident was traumatic for all involved.
“My first reaction was to burst into tears,” she said.
“It took me a while to stop feeling sick in the stomach and come to terms with it.
“This kangaroo basically trusted humans and got close enough for a human to inflict that intentional pain and suffering – it’s inconceivable.”
Ms Harvey, of charity Wild 2 Free, said the incident was a disgrace.
She said the suspected attack was a horrific consequence of people feeding wildlife and earning their trust.
“Because she lived in a caravan park, she trusted humans, otherwise she would’ve ran a mile,” Ms Harvey said. “This is the consequence of people feeding animals.”
Ms Harvey said she witnessed the consequences of people feeding wildlife in her daily work caring for injured and orphaned kangaroos.
“At the moment I have three joeys in care from caravan parks whose mothers have died from being fed incorrect food," she said.
Also in her care is a 15kg male kangaroo who requires extensive rehabilitation after being raised by members of the public.
She said the kangaroo from last week’s incident, known as Janey, was only 15 months old and still dependent on her mother.
Police said the incident was being investigated and officers were working to determine if the injuries were deliberate.
Anyone with information is urged to contact Batemans Bay Police on 4472 0099.