An example of problems faced by BCCS members when receiving birds needing care.
Cxxxx Cxxxx (DEH)
Adviser to the Minister for Environment
Some days ago I received a request from a woman at Yalata her husband was Land Manager (?) and had taken a Wedge-tailed Eagle from aboriginal children, who were stoning it. The eagle was distressed, and suffering shock and was injured. He had lost so many and had so many broken feathers that he would need to be cared for for some time.
It was organised that the bird would be collected (as they requested) by the member whom I felt was the best suited to assess and care for it. Because of its’ injuries this member contacted an officer of your department (Ian Faulkenberg) who has a special interest in raptors and has previously been consulted by us when we have felt a need for a second opinion.
Ian agreed with our member that the eagle would probably need up to three-to-four months for feathers to regrow and should remain with her until it could be released. He also told her to tell Fauna Permits that she had spoken to him in case the ridiculous two-week rule was invoked by them.
Our member applied for a Rescue Permit and of course was told that she must now purchase a $75.00 per annum ‘Keep and Sell Permit’.
She has no intention of ‘Keeping and Selling’ any bird and has never traded in wildlife and has never (as the Minister suggested to us) charged for her service so that she could afford the permits issued by his department.
She intended to care, feed, accommodate and provide veterinary attention at her own expense as a compassionate exercise for a creature in distress.
Our member quite rightly feels that officers of the Department of Environment and Heritage have misled them. We were informed by them when the changes were made that no bird needed a ‘Rescue Permit’ until we knew it would not release. This bird will release.
Had the children been allowed to stone the eagle to death there would have been no consequences for them. Out of compassion it was removed to safety and delivered to our care and because of the compassionate work that we do we are to pay your department for the priveledge.
Our member quite rightly question the attitude of the department and would not like to believe that the unsympathetic response by both the Minister and his staff is as a result of our recent campaign against the slaughter of thousands of native parrots by growers.
I would appreciate a response from you.
Sharon K. Blair
Bird Care and Conservation Society of SA Inc
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