Frequently asked questions about novel coronavirus (CoV)

Our volunteers in their wildlife work might like to follow some of these NSW Health recommendations when they are out and about in the community. 

A “no touch” policy and the social distancing recommendations might be the best ways to self-protect. 

This link covers a number of FAQ recommendations and scenarios that will guide volunteers in ways to avoid coming into contact with Covid-19 and what to do if they suspect contact with Covid-19.

DPIE – Wildlife and Conservation Bushfire Recovery Immediate -Response January 2020

The recent bushfires of late 2019 and early 2020 have had a devastating impact on our communities and our natural environment. Tragically, lives have been lost and thousands of homes have been destroyed or damaged, across the country. The bushfires have burned more than 5.3 million hectares in New South Wales, including more than 2.7 million hectares of our national park estate.

We are still determining the full magnitude of the damage, in terms of the extent and severity of the fires and the impacts on our wildlife and their natural habitats. Efforts continue to actively fight fires that are still burning in a number of areas of the state. Using state of the art aerial imagery, remote sensing and mapping techniques, our scientists are completing our understanding of the impacts the fires have had on our natural environment and what this means for recovery.

What we know is that many of our most vulnerable species have been heavily impacted as a result of the fires and now face threats from habitat loss, scarcity of food and water and predation by feral animals. While our assessment continues, we are undertaking essential recovery actions right now.

This document sets out the immediate actions we are taking to protect wildlife and support the natural recovery process that has already started in many areas. Our immediate response includes the deployment of watering stations, supplementary food drops, and broad-scale feral animal
control. We are also planning for the longer-term restoration and recovery of our native animals, plants and landscapes across New South Wales. We will continue to update our response as we improve our understanding of the impacts of the fires.

I want to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has contributed to the firefighting effort. In particular, I want to thank those volunteers who have selflessly contributed their time to protect others, often while their own properties were under threat, and the firefighting staff in my own portfolio, including in the National Parks and Wildlife Service, many of
whom are still fighting active fires.

Coming through a disaster is a time when our community unites. Many of us have been touched by the images of the tireless and heroic efforts of not only our firefighters, but also volunteers rescuing wildlife from fire grounds and providing care. These stories and images have contributed to
a groundswell of support and generosity from communities in New South Wales, Australia and internationally. This support will greatly assist in the rehabilitation of many injured animals and restoration of their habitat.

The Hon. Matthew Kean MP
Minister for Energy and Environment

Read the whole document.

Donating to the NWC

Paying by PayPal
No PayPal Account? Using a credit card?
When you go to the PayPal page, look for the section on the bottom left. This gives you the option to pay by card without having a PayPal account.

All donations to NSW Wildlife Council will be allocated to a Special Purposes Budget to be used specifically for projects that will directly benefit wildlife needing assistance.

These projects include:

  • expenses of member groups in dealing with Emergencies affecting wildlife e.g. wildfire, flood and other extreme weather events
  • partial funding of the annual grants program of $5000 to assist five member group volunteers with their capital expenses related to construction of wildlife rehabilitation facilities and projects

All donations over $2 are tax-deductible.

To donate directly into our bank account the details are:
Name: NWC Public Fund
BSB:  032691
Account Number: 472838

or via PayPal via the button below

Wildlife Drought and Fire Recovery Fund

The NSW Wildlife Council (NWC) as the peak body for wildlife rehabilitation groups in NSW works to achieve optimal outcomes for our wildlife.

Since early January 2020 more than 90% of the NWC land-based voluntary wildlife rescue member groups are affected by fires with the remaining 10% operating in areas experiencing years of the lowest ever recorded rainfall. 

The scale of these fires is devastating for wildlife with figures of 4.9 million hectares now reported burnt in NSW.  These areas once represented important and, in some cases, vital, native wildlife refuge habitat.

The NWC Wildlife Drought and Fire Recovery Fund aims to provide long term recovery support to its volunteer NWC wildlife rescue and rehabilitation groups in NSW.

The NWC recognises the long term impact of these 2019/2020 fires and the continuing drought.  Support and care of our wildlife and actions to restore their habitat will be needed for months and years. 

Our wildlife now faces three compounding threats: 

  • the ongoing severe drought has already greatly compromised wildlife and reduced the quality and availability of feed
  • the initial loss of wildlife from the fires; followed by the cumulative effects as they succumb to injury and psychological trauma.
  • the of loss of habitat offering necessary shelter and the food resources needed for survival

Displaced surviving wildlife from fire-zones is now vulnerable, confused, possibly injured and stressed.

The NWC is grateful for the generous public support to our wildlife during this very challenging time and asks for continued support to our member groups through the NWC Wildlife Drought and Fire Recovery Fund.

NWC land-based rescue groups that are fire affected include:

NWC Land Based Rescue Groups in Severe Drought:

From the NWC about NSW Fires

Over 1 million hectares have burned in NSW in the last few weeks, much of which was wildlife habitat; a cause of alarm to the wildlife rehabilitation sector

Fires at Crowdy Bay National Park
Crowdy Bay National Parks Fires

The NSW Wildlife Council (NWC) as the peak body for wildlife rehabilitation groups in NSW is so very thankful to all the First Responders from our emergency services and the wildlife sector. NWC’s member groups are volunteers working to achieve optimal outcomes for wildlife, whether in rescue, rehabilitation and release of wildlife or responding to emergencies.

Unfortunately, over half of the land-based NSW Wildlife Council volunteer wildlife groups are within fire-affected areas. These volunteer wildlife groups are responding and rescuing wildlife including walking fire-grounds cleared by RFS and National Parks & Wildlife, treating and assisting injured native animals and, where necessary, assisting with a humane end to suffering.

It’s not just about the wildlife in the fire-zones but displaced animals that are now vulnerable, confused, possibly injured and stressed and are the subject of calls for assistance within surrounding areas.

The compound effect of drought and now fires is a devastating issue for the wildlife of NSW which gravely concerns NSW Wildlife Council.

All NWC wildlife groups stand ready to support and assist our fellow wildlife responders and carers both during this time of urgent response and for the long term recovery of animals and habitat.

If you are able, please consider directly supporting the NWC volunteer wildlife groups that are affected by these devastating fires, they are working very hard, in challenging and heartbreaking situations, to assist our wildlife around the clock.

Media Release NSW Wildlife Council

21st November 2019

NSW Wildlife Council: The Compound Effect of Droughts and Fires is Devastating for Wildlife

The NSW Wildlife Council (NWC) wishes to express its heartfelt thanks and recognition for the amazing efforts of all the emergency services and the wildlife first responders who are supporting native wildlife at this extremely challenging and difficult time.

The NWC is the peak body for wildlife rehabilitation in NSW working to achieve optimal outcomes for our wildlife.  More than half of our NWC voluntary wildlife rescue member groups are now within fire-affected areas.    The compound effect of drought, and now fires, is a devastating issue which gravely concerns the NSW Wildlife Council.   

We understand that the NSW fires have burned through over 1 million hectares so far.  The areas burnt out once represented important and, in some cases, vital, refuge habitat for our native wildlife.  Some wildlife species may never, or be very slow in recovering from this disaster and it may take years to see species return.  Without the primary wildlife food sources and habitat to live in, the hope for their survival is quite dim. ’’

Chair of the NWC, Ms Koosmen.

Our wildlife now faces four compounding threats: 

  • the severe and continuing drought has already greatly compromised wildlife:
  • latent injuries which are not often apparent in the immediate aftermath of the fire can see more wildlife succumb from the physical and psychological injuries and trauma; 
  • the of loss of habitat offering necessary shelter and food sources for wildlife survivors;
  • Displaced wildlife from fire-zones are now vulnerable, confused, possibly injured and stressed. 

Please consider placing out shallow bowls of water with a rock or branch, which offers safety for smaller animals to perch and rest whilst they drink.     

Call your local wildlife group for assistance if you see wildlife in need.

As burned areas are declared safe wildlife rescue groups are conducting ‘black walks’ in search of injured wildlife.  

The NSW Wildlife Council is concentrating on ensuring volunteer wildlife groups get the support they need.   NWC is also conscious of the impact on our wildlife front line responders on the ground who are working hard in confronting situations, witnessing injuries and acts of sheer survival by wildlife from the effects of wildfire.  

More than 60% of all NWC wildlife rescue group members are impacted by fires.   A full list of the NWC Wildlife Rescue Group Members are available at

Media Contacts
Sonja Elwood
Media Officer NWC
Ph: 0424979907


Suzy Nethercott-Watson
Vice-Chair NWC
Ph:  0418239343

Welcome to the NSW Wildlife Council (NWC) Winter Newsletter

Welcome to the NSW Wildlife Council Inc Newsletter.

I wish to thank Leesa who kindly took up the role as our Newsletter Editor.

NWC Winter Newsletter Image of Kangaroo Joey
Joey – Photo courtesy of Sonja Elwood

We are very excited to have our Newsletter happening again as we wish to showcase great stories from our many valued member groups and share with you all the issues regarding our wildlife in NSW.

Our NWC Newsletter we hope will give us another tool to use to network further with other groups and the community on all matters dealing with wildlife.

Happy reading everyone, please make sure you share our news with your groups.

The Rehabilitator Survey idenƟfied that a lot of individuals in member groups knew very little or nothing about the NWC and how it represented the wildlife rehabilitation sector. By sharing this Newsletter your members will gain a better understanding of the NWC.

We welcome contributions of news stories and interesƟng animal arƟcles with our Newsletter Editor. The Newsletter is your opportunity to share with other groups in NSW what has been happening in your region.

With warmest regards, Audrey Koosmen. Chair of NSW Wildlife Council Inc.