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Ozark - the Australian Wildlife Carer's Information & Communications Network

Wed - Jun 28
2017



INJURIES IN RELEASED WOMBAT



Daisy May - First day home - Photo by Cath Horsfield
Daisy May - First day home
Daisy May - 31st August - Photo by Cath Horsfield
Daisy May - 31st August

Wombat Daisy May arrived here in September 2002. She was raised and totally bonded with another female orphan "Madam Lash". The two girls were inseparable. - Madam Lash always the leader.

June 14th 2003, Madam Lash became extremely restless, as did Daisy May and so the girls were released. They were monitored every few days and both seemed to be fine. We supplemented their food as it was winter. All went fine for the first few weeks, neither of them showing any interest in us, just the food that we bought.

June 22nd, 2003. We found Daisy May had been attacked by another wombat. We are certain was not Madam Lash. She had much of the fur ripped off her back. The wound looked clean, no obvious bite marks going into her skin and Daisy May seemed on top of it, so we chose to leave her there. The skin looked like tanned leather. We physically saw her four times after that and she was still OK.

July 12th, 2003. The fifth time, Daisy May had left the burrow, the skin had fallen off and she had a large open wound. As the bond between the girls had broken, we chose to bring her home and treat the wound. This when we contacted Ozark for help.
The options for treating the wound were:

  • Manuka honey.

  • Using human wound products to cover the wound.

  • Wash the wound and monitor it.

The first two options would have accelerated the healing process, but as the wound was clean and it wasn't warm, (flies would have been a nightmare), we chose to leave it and interfere with Daisy May as little as possible. The time frame to heal was much longer than expected, but the results excellent. She didn't seem to want to rub the wound at all , which we found amazing as wombats love to rub their rear ends.

Daisy May Healing - Photo by Cath Horsfield
Daisy May Healing

The Outcome -
By August 31st, much of the wound was covered in fur and it continues to grow. Daisy May is content being back home. We believe that removing any stress from her life and making sure that she has access to better than normal nutrition by giving her the grass that we cut has accelerated the healing of the wound. We continue to monitor Madam Lash out at her release site and she is prospering.

Our thanks to all the Ozark members who replied to our call for assistance, especially Dr. Anne Fowler who educated us on dealing with such a wound. It looked horrendous at first; we felt that Daisy May would have been in a lot of pain, but as the wound was a full thickness rip, it was not painful. If it had been summer it would have been a different story, as flies would have certainly been a problem.

Our message .
It is essential that wombats released into the wild be monitored. Wombats can be really nasty to each other. Even after all this time, we continue to support Madam Lash with extra food. She wants nothing to do with us which is terrific.

Cath Horsfield and Garry Malzard.
Carers of wombats since 1991.




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