- The new WA Wildlife Hospital (incorporating the WA Wildlife Education and Training Centre) has held an official launch event two years after it began operating, following Covid-19 related-delays
- The hospital was extended and upgraded in a $6m City of Cockburn redevelopment of the Cockburn Wetlands Precinct in Bibra Lake
- Since the new facility opened two years ago, it has received 12,336+ patients, and released 4,762+ back into the wild.
From safely housing injured bobtails infected with a deadly virus, to training 250 volunteers, the WA Wildlife Hospital has recorded a 50 per cent increase in patients in the two years since moving into its new facility at the Cockburn Wetlands Precinct in April 2021.
Today marks the facility’s official launch, following a series of Covid-19 related delays, with City of Cockburn Mayor Logan Howlett extending his congratulations to its Executive Committee, management and operations teams, veterinary staff, and more than 250 volunteers.
“The WA Wildlife Hospital and the WA Wildlife Education and Training Centre and all its dedicated staff and volunteers should be very proud of this trailblazing facility and its ongoing success in the field of native animal treatment and rehabilitation in WA,” Mayor Howlett said.
“The role of WA Wildlife in the local, WA and national community cannot be underestimated.
“These rich and varied successes have seen WA Wildlife lead the way in wildlife rehabilitation and rescue in WA, not only in the past two years, but since the organisation, formerly known as Native ARC, began leasing an old house owned by the City at the Bibra Lake site in 1998.
“The incorporated organisation later moved into another adjacent farmhouse owned by the City, and following the City’s major $6m redevelopment of the wetlands precinct in 2021, that farmhouse has become a dedicated training and volunteer base for WA Wildlife.
“The specialised treatment facilities have enabled WA Wildlife Hospital to become Wildlife Health Australia’s third Wildlife Diseases Surveillance Program sentinel clinic in WA, which is a great achievement and a very important role.
“WA Wildlife Hospital has now entered more than 140 events onto this database which captures wildlife disease surveillance from hospitals with high wildlife caseloads to keep track of wildlife health incidents in Australia, such as Shingleback Lizards (Bobtails) with Shingleback Nidovirus1 (Bobtail Flu).
“The new hospital’s isolation ward has significantly improved WA Wildlife’s capacity to treat infected lizards, increasing from four Bobtails with the flu at the old building to up to 24 simultaneously, complete with specialist enclosures and nebulising systems.”
The wetlands precinct redevelopment was enhanced by generous Lotterywest grants of more than $2.2m for vital facility fit out and development of programs and training/education opportunities at WA Wildlife and fellow tenant The Wetlands Centre Cockburn (TWCC), which received $1.469m and $800,836 respectively.
Every year, the City provides $90,765.25 (ex. GST) each in funding and program support to WA Wildlife and TWCC. This funding follows a 5-year cycle and is indexed annually.
Some of WA Wildlife’s achievements (April 2021-April 2023) include:
- 12,336+ patients admitted
- 4,762+ animals released (+404 transferred to other organisations for rehabilitation)
- Preparation of more than 100,000 wildlife meals for animals at the facility
- 400+ surgeries. This number will increase to 300-400 pa in the next couple of years
- 4-6 x-rays each day
- Treatment and rehabilitation of many new wildlife species including critically endangered animals, adult kangaroo, penguin, birds of prey, marine turtle, bustard, emu, pelagic seabird and echidna.
WA Wildlife is always in need of monetary and material donations and dedicated volunteers. Visit their website
to find out how you can help.
L-r, Vet Nurse Callie Goulding and Dr Meg Rodgers give a helping hand to a Little Penguin at WA Wildlife in Bibra Lake.