Wildcare Contacts

In most instances the Wildcare Helpline is the best number to call.

Wildcare Helpline - 9474 9055

Darling Range Wildlife Shelter - 9394 0885

Kanyana Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre - 9291 3900

Kaarakin Black Cockatoo Conservation Centre - 9390 2288 ( Black-Cockatoos only ) 


Seabirds and waterbirds 

Western Australian Seabird Rescue - 6102 8464


South-western Snake-necked Turtles

Turtle Oblonga rescue & Rehabilitation Network

East Metro - 0425 727 411

South Metro - 0424 727 624

North Metro - 0414 476 867


What to do if you find sick or injured wildlife

If you find sick or injured wildlife, call the Wildcare Helpline on 9474 9055.

The Wildcare Helpline can provide advice and put you in contact with your nearest registered wildlife rehabilitator. To ensure the best outcome for any sick or injured wildlife it is important that they are treated and cared for by a trained carer.

To catch and contain a sick or injured animal, use a towel or similar to place over them to pick it up, place in an appropriate sized, ventilated box, and keep the animal warm, in a dark and quiet place. For larger animals such as Black-Cockatoos, an overturned laundry basket weighed down can be used to keep them contained on site until a carer can arrive to collect them.

Keeping them in a dark, quiet place reduces stress and makes transportation easier. Handle the animal as little as possible to reduce further stress and do not offer it food or water unless advised by a rehabilitator. Only pick up wildlife if it is safe for your to do so, and be careful of teeth, claws, and beaks when approaching and handling.

The City installs temporary signage in spring in areas where ducks are known to cross roads with ducklings to minimise the risk of injury and death. Keep an eye out for signs during spring and slow down and keep an eye out for ducks crossing the road.

What to do if you find a baby bird 

If the bird is sick or injured place it in a dark, warm box with a towel ( no food or water ), and call the Wildcare Helpline on 9474 9055, or contact your local wildlife hospital.

With very young birds ( naked, or with down and pin feathers ) if you can see a nest return the baby bird to the nest. If possible, monitor the nest for an hour. If you cannot find the nest, or the parents have not returned to feed it within an hour, contact the Wildcare Helpline or local wildlife hospital.

With older chicks ( fledglings which have some adult feathers and will flap their wings ), watch to see if the parents are around. If you do not see the parents and you feel the baby bird could be at risk ( e.g. cat attack ) place it in a nearby tree and continue to monitor for the parents to return to feed.


Avian Botulism

Avian botulism is caused by the bacterium Clostridium botlulinum which results in paralysis in affected animals. Though the bacterium occurs naturally in the sediments of wetlands , various environmental factors including warm water temperatures, anoxic ( low to no oxygen ) conditions, and nutrient rich substrates can lead to outbreaks of botulism and large scale deaths of birds.

Botulism outbreaks typically occur in summer and early autumn when temperatures are high.

Though waterfowl such as ducks are often the most heavily impacted by botulism, it can affect any birds that feed and drink within the wetlands, It may also affect fish.

Symptoms in birds may include:

  • Difficulty holding up their head
  • Unusual or poor posture when standing
  • Dragging one or both wings
  • Difficulty or an inability to fly
  • Difficulty or an inability to walk, some birds may use their wings to shuffle around on the ground

What to do if you see sick or dead birds

  • If you see a sick bird contact the Wildcare Helpline on 9474 9055, if treated early birds affected by botulism have a greater chance of survival
  • Notify the City of Gosnells on 9397 3000 if you see and sick or dead birds within City wetlands and lakes as trained staff can collect them Monday to Friday between the hours of 7am - 3pm, it is important that the dead birds are removed to try and break the cycle.
  • The City will also undertake regular checks of areas with suspected botulism to search for sick birds.


Feeding birds such as ducks can increase the risk of botulism outbreaks. Uneaten food adds nutrients directly to the water, and feeding birds increases the number of birds above what a waterbody can naturally sustain, leading to high nutrient levels from bird excrement.

Letting wildlife feed itself also means a more natural and healthier diet, young animals learn from foraging behaviours, and more balanced ecosystems as the bird species commonly fed are more common, and aggressive species that will outcompete smaller, less common species. Remember, though you may not be personally feeding birds much, you don't know who else is also feeding them and it all adds up.

Whilst humans and pets have a very low risk of contracting botulism, they can contract it if they eat infected birds, fish or maggots. When walking dogs around wetlands keep them on a short lead to minimise the risk.

The City installs temporary health warning signs at waterbodies with suspected botulism outbreaks. Keep an eye out for signs during summer and autumn.


Black and White disease 

Recent research indicates that Black and White disease may be closely related to botulism, and has similar symptoms such as unable to lift their heads or fly. They may also have curled up talons ( feet ) or be weak and shaky.

Species most commonly affected in the Perth region are Magpie, Australian Ravens, and Magpie Larks.


Helpful links:

Wildcare Helpline - https://www.dpaw.wa.gov.au/about-us/contact-us/wildcare-helpline

Kanyana Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre - https://www.kanyanawildlife.org.au/

Darling Range Wildlife Shelter - https://www.darlingrangewildlife.com.au/

Western Australian Seabird Rescue - https://wasr.org.au/found-an-injured-bird/

Kaarakin Black Cockatoo Conservation Centre - https://blackcockatoorecovery.com/










You might also like