Roos on the move to look for food: City becoming the new grazing ground

ROO-ED AWAKENING: South Orange residents woke to this sight in July. Photo: CONTRIBUTED
ROO-ED AWAKENING: South Orange residents woke to this sight in July. Photo: CONTRIBUTED

RESIDENTS are reporting kangaroos are migrating closer to town in search of sustenance made scarce by the big dry.

Late last week, the NSW Department of Primary Industries announced the entire state was now in the grips of a drought, and large areas of the region now have little or no grass for stock or wild animals.

Charles Sturt University’s (CSU) lush lawns in Orange, as well as its Bathurst and Dubbo campuses, have become a favourite grazing place for kangaroos as the drought has deepened.

While there have been increased numbers of kangaroos on campus due to drought conditions, there have been no safety incidents with kangaroos on campus reported.

Charles Sturt University spokeswoman

“This year, while there have been increased numbers of kangaroos on campus due to drought conditions, there have been no safety incidents with kangaroos on campus reported,” a CSU spokeswoman said.

She said there had been no on-campus vehicle collisions with kangaroos despite the number of marsupials increasing.

“The university advises students and staff regularly on the presence of fauna through our communication channels, including our SMS system, CSU Safe,” she said.

FURTHER AFIELD: A couple of kangaroos enjoying the winter chill at Borrodell vineyard in June. Photo: JOHN KICH

FURTHER AFIELD: A couple of kangaroos enjoying the winter chill at Borrodell vineyard in June. Photo: JOHN KICH

“CSU also provides 24-hour security to ensure the safety of our students, staff and visitors.”

Elsewhere in Orange, scores of kangaroos have been spotted at the Orange Ex-Services’ Country Club golf course, the TAFE campus, and the hospital – all to Orange’s south.

Last month a large male kangaroo was also spotted near the grounds of James Sheahan Catholic High School and the cemetery, as well as on several streets and front lawns in the city’s south.

WIRES Central West vice chair Christie Jarrett said volunteers across the region have received many recent call outs to incidents where kangaroos have been hit by vehicles, while others are in malnourished condition due to the lack of feed.

She said Orange, Bathurst, Lithgow and Mudgee are areas of particular concern.

“Don’t swerve, slow down when you’re driving at dusk and around dawn,” she said.

ON THE MOVE: A massive kangaroo and his friend at Orange cemetery last month. Photo: NICK WILLOX

ON THE MOVE: A massive kangaroo and his friend at Orange cemetery last month. Photo: NICK WILLOX

Ms Jarrett said motorists who do collide with a kangaroo should stop if safe to do so and check if the animal is still alive.

If so, do not go near the kangaroo as it as “they can still hop with a broken leg” and contact WIRES to report the injured animal.

Ms Jarrett said joeys often survive a collision but can die in the cold so she encouraged people to check the pouch and report any young to WIRES on 1300 094 737.

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