In many countries of the world, the trend towards urbanization over the last century has impacted populations of native animals. Sometimes the wildlife species that have been affected try to return to the neighborhoods that were their natural habitat, even though human housing has taken over the area. These displaced animals are in danger of declining in numbers since they can hardly compete with suburban busy roads and other infrastructure. In these situations a native animal may turn up in someone’s backyard, but it would be unwise for the owners themselves to try to dislodge it.
Just as human presence, activity and domestic pets create a disturbance and problems for the wildlife of an area, animals that turn up in a house, yard or residential zone will be a problem for the humans. Examples of how these close encounters might occur include nocturnal creatures being attracted by food in rubbish bins, a hibernating snake being disturbed by a building site clearance, an inexperienced orphaned juvenile koala being attracted to children playing, or even a native bird accidentally flying in through a large open window. But it may not be safe, or even legal, to remove the creature unless you are a trained, authorized person.
For this reason most districts have a hotline phone number for residents to call specifically for wildlife removal, to request the attendance of trained personnel. This service will be different to an animal shelter hotline for stray pets or other types of animal rescue services. If the wild animal is a protected or endangered species, there may be a fine imposed if an unauthorized person seeks to capture it. It is important to realize that a bite or scratch from a frightened creature can be serious, and an animal or bird can injure itself when trying to escape.
If you find a lost or injured wild animal away from its normal home, check for the phone number of your local wildlife removal specialist. It is best not to approach the animal, but the specialist may give you some instructions over the phone to carry out before they can arrive. They may ask you to take a photo on your smart phone and send it to them for identification of the type of animal and the nature of the problem. Sometimes animals become stunned and disorientated after trying to dodge a vehicle on the road, so describing the creature’s behaviour can also be helpful to the wildlife officer.
Apart from being trained to handle a wildlife removal situation safely, the specialist will have the appropriate equipment with which to capture and contain the animal for relocation. If the creature is alarmed or injured, the officer may be able to sedate it with a tranquilizer dart to make resolving the situation less hazardous.
Regardless of how the issue came about, in general all species of wildlife should be treated gently and not unduly harmed before relocating, even if they are in plague proportions. It is likely that mankind has caused the imbalance in the first place, perhaps by eliminating predators, or introducing an alien species into the ecology, or by providing easy farmed food to support higher populations. Whatever the underlying cause, when a wild creature occasionally invades the human environment, take no risks and consult a wildlife removal specialist, like graybrotherswildlife.com without delay.