With domestic animals, try to find an owner by contacting your neighbours or community notice boards. If you are unsuccessful contact the Kangaroo Island Council or Kangaroo Island Vet Clinic. Livestock (sheep, cattle, goats) may have ear tags that can help identify the owner. PIRSA can help with locating the owner if the animal has an ear tag. You cannot simply keep the animal, treat it or euthanise it. Only a vet or an inspector under the Animal Welfare Act has the authority to do these things. If the animal requires medical assistance or euthanasia, please contact the Kangaroo Island Vet Clinic.
It is illegal to release a feral animal once in your possession. In most cases the best option is to humanely euthanise it (feral pigs, cats). If you can’t, or don’t want to kill it, contact the Kingscote DEWNR office for assistance. There are restrictions on how to manage feral cats. If the cat is more than a kilometre from a bona fide residence, it can be humanely killed. If it is on a National Park, a warden is allowed to kill it. In all other cases, only a vet or the council is permitted to kill the cat. So take it to the Council or Veterinary Clinic where it can be scanned for a microchip and the owner contacted if it is owned or euthanized if it isn’t.
Once in care, these animals cannot be released without a DEWNR permit to do so. The Kangaroo Island Wildlife Network has experienced wildlife carers. Contact them or the Vet Clinic for assistance to find suitable carers or obtain advice on caring for this animal yourself.
All other native fauna
In many cases, animals either recover or die within a few days. In some cases, the animal will simply need to be euthanised - if you have the skills and equipment to humanely kill it, please do so. It is cruel to keep it alive if there is little chance of it recovering or having a reasonable quality of life. If you do not have the skills or equipment please seek assistance as soon as possible via the KI Wildlife Network or the Veterinary Clinic. For animals requiring ongoing care, in most cases, these animals need specialist care.
If you want to look after it yourself and if you have the experience and resources to do so, you will need a rescue permit from DEWNR (note applications will be assessed based on carer suitability, if it is deemed that you do not have required level of experience for the species you have in care you will be requested to transfer the animal to an experienced carer).
For further information or to download a permit application please visit the DEWNR website or contact the Fauna Permits Unit on (08) 8124 4972 or by email at DEWfaunapermitsunit@sa.gov.au. For advice on how to look after it properly, contact the KI Wildlife Network or the Vet Clinic (08) 8553 2485. If you decide that the animal’s requirements are more than you can manage, hand it on to someone who can look after it. Again, the KI Wildlife Network or the Clinic can help you organise this.
For every animal, use your best judgement on what is lawful, what is fair to the animal and what is fair to your community. And please ask for help if you need it.