SAVEM’s activation to assist the Department of Environment and Water (DEW) in the River Murray floods is about to enter a second month. SAVEM veterinarians’ main task is to provide expert animal welfare advice to DEW with respect to stranded wildlife. Many animals have become trapped by rising flood waters, and while kangaroos can swim, they are not “swimmers”. Swimming is not their preferred means of locomotion. Additionally, current generations of kangaroos living along the river have never experienced flood waters. They have never had to adapt to such an environment which makes the situation more complex and confusing for them. It is indeed a wicked problem. As the floodwater peaks in the upper Murray, SAVEM teams may shift the focus of our operations downstream. This will be decided in consultation with DEW, who are coordinating the wildlife response.
Morgan from the air. Photo: Steve Kittle, Murray Bridge Gliding Club.