- Remove any built up piles of rubbish, wood or building materials from around the house area.
- Keep grass short and all edges, fence lines and pathways trimmed.
- Keep chook pens and aviaries free from seed and droppings (mice and rats love this and snakes eat mice and rats) and ensure they are well sealed at ground level to help prevent snakes entering.
- Don’t let garden beds and shrubs get overgrown.
- If you have a wood pile near the house, try to stack wood off the ground.
- If you use netting to cover strawberries or fruit trees, make sure the netting is stretched over a frame and any excess does not hang in bundles on the ground. Snakes are regularly caught in this loose netting and can be severely injured by it. This also means that a snake that would normally have passed through your yard and kept going, will be trapped in your yard. If you have a snake caught in netting call Wildcare on 02 62991966 and we will remove it for you.
- If you see a snake, lock up all your pets as far away as possible from the snake, preferably inside your house. Never attempt to CATCH or KILL the snake as this is the easiest way to be bitten.
- Contact Wildcare on 02 6299-1966 as soon as you can and observe the snake from a safe distance. We can normally send a snake handler relatively quickly. If you live in the ACT contact RSPCA Wildlife or the ACT Parks Ranger on 132281.
- Try to leave some live and hollow trees around the area. These bats can have up to three roosting sites in one area and will move from one to the other throughout the night.
- Ensure all entry points to the roof are blocked off either with wire or foam filler or some other suitable material. Remembering these creatures are small and can get into the tiniest of spaces.
- Don’t leave coats or hats outside at night, especially near verandah lights. The bats are attracted to the insects that hang around the lights at night.
- Don’t try to catch a bat. They may carry a disease which can make you ill.
- Don’t spray with insect spray or any other aerosols.
- Leave some trees in the area.
- Put up a possum box in a tree if you have possums around.
- If there is a possum living in your roof, block all entries to the roof once the possum has left the roof cavity at night.
- Don’t put rat baits in the roof. Possums like the taste and this can cause severe internal bleeding and a slow, painful death.
- Ensure dogs stay in the yard or are on a leash when out walking.
- Never let a dog chase or corner a kangaroo.
- Do not feed kangaroos that come around your house at night.
- Be cautious when driving near paddocks or bushland during dusk, night time and dawn, this is when kangaroos are most active. If you do hit a kangaroo, please stop and check the animal. Call Wildcare if you are unsure what to do.
- Try not to use strands of barbed wire on fences. This can cause horrific leg injuries to kangaroos.
- Never approach a kangaroo, they can give a nasty kick when they feel threatened or cornered.
- If you accidentally end up close to a large kangaroo don't stare it in the eye or make shooing gestures. The kangaroo will see this as a challenge or threat and may try to defend itself. Look downwards, keeping an eye on the kangaroo and back away from the kangaroo to a safe position.
- Magpies are only a real problem around nesting time from August through to November.
- Never feed them.
- Never throw anything at them.
- Keep a small broken branch near the door, with leaves still on it, if you have to walk near an area where they are nesting. Wave the branch around and it will deter them from swooping.
Remember that Australian native wildlife is protected and to intentionally kill, injure or keep native wildlife as pets is illegal.
A rather hungry (or ticklish?) microbat
Photo by Joanna Pagan