Life­savers for pos­sums

North Coast Times - - FRONT PAGE -

BUILDERS work­ing on the Yanchep Surf Life Sav­ing Club site have saved the life of a west­ern pygmy pos­sum found in a rub­bish pile.

Bis­tel Con­struc­tion site man­ager Rob Voss said his su­per­vi­sor Nathan Morris spot­ted what he thought was a mouse in a pile of rub­bish they were about to pick up with a bob­cat on Au­gust 23.

“He picked it up and re­alised it wasn’t a mouse and brought it to me. We re­alised it was prob­a­bly going to be a pos­sum,” he said.

“We wrapped it up in a beanie then took it to the site of­fice – we switched the heater on and put it in a card­board box.”

Mr Voss said the wildlife carer who picked it up kept him in­formed and later con­firmed it was a fully grown fe­male pygmy pos­sum.

“It was about the size of the palm of my hand, so I would never have thought it was fully grown,” Mr Voss said.

North­ern Val­leys Wildlife Res­cue carer So­nia Cooke praised the builders for notic­ing the mar­su­pial, call­ing wildlife car­ers and keep­ing it warm while they waited for a carer to col­lect it.

“It was a small pygmy pos­sum about the size of a mouse,” she said.

“They were so good to no­tice and pick it up.”

Ms Cooke said the carer looked af­ter the pos­sum for a cou­ple of days be­fore re­leas­ing it into banksia wood­land on Au­gust 25.

She said the species was com­mon across the south­west of WA and nor­mally hi­ber­nated at this time of year.

“Be­cause they are so small, they are rarely seen – you would be very lucky to see one,” she said.

“Be­ing noc­tur­nal, they are not nor­mally out in the day.”

Any­one who finds sick or in­jured wildlife can call the Wild­care Helpline on 9474 9055.

The ma­ture fe­male pygmy pos­sum found at the Yanchep Surf Life Sav­ing Club.

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