With its 150 acres, Jowajilla Wildlife Refuge is a safe haven for the many orphaned and injured animals that come through its doors. It eases the transition between domestic and wild lifestyles.
Most of the macropods that find their way here were rescued and raised in homes by wildlife carers. They have lived with humans most of their lives and are accustomed luxuries not available in the wild. Jowajilla and other pre-release/soft-release sites give them an opportunity to reclaim their wild roots in a safe and nurturing environment.
To do this, macropods are weened off their bottles and are given a mix of solid foods, such as macropod pellets and sweet potato. They must also find food on their own by grazing on the flora in the area. After a time, they slowly integrate into the local mob of their species or seek other mobs nearby. As they become more confident in themselves and more familiar with the surrounding environment, they begin to detach themselves from carers and the domestic life they once knew.
These are just some of the animals that gather around during feeding time or linger around the property dozing the day away. Many are fully released but like to come back for visits. Others are wild ones that are curious about new arrivals. I had such a great experience at Jowajilla Wildlife Refuge helping to feed and care for these animals. Being able to sit on the veranda in the afternoon and look out on these amazing creatures is something I’ll never forget.