Tell the NSW Environment Minister to save wombats from deadly disease

MP Matt Kean

Wombat mange is devastatingly painful way for wombats to die, and a heartbreaking affliction for wildlife carers to witness wombats suffering with.

Mange is a skin infection caused by mites eating through a wombat’s skin. An unbearably itchy rash results, which will get so bad that the skin over the entire wombat’s body will thicken and split open. The wombat will also lose their ability to search for food as their eyes and ears are forced closed by swollen, flaking skin. Without treatment, the wombat will die of dehydration, starvation, wandering onto roads, or a secondary infection like pneumonia.

There is a 100% infection transfer rate from mother to Joey and a very high rate of wombat to wombat transfer as they are social animal and share infected burrows. This wipes out entire wombat colonies in a short amount of time.

This is the horrible reality of an untold number of wombats living with mange in NSW and beyond, with 90% of local populations affected and entire localised populations going extinct from mange.

The pain wombats endure as a result of mange is almost unimaginable, which is why the Animal Justice Party believes it is cruel and unacceptable to let them suffer, particularly when community-based treatment programs are working.

Though mange is recognised by all Australian states and territories as an animal welfare issue, to date the NSW Government has committed no funding for the treatment of wombat mange.

We can’t keep letting wombats suffer.

The NSW Government must fund wombat mange research and treatment programs.

To: MP Matt Kean
From: [Your Name]

You as environment minister have the power to save our precious wombats.

NSW has the chance to lead Australia in the research and treatment of wombat mange, saving thousands of wombats from intense suffering and prolonged, painful death, and increasing our state’s ecological biodiversity at the same time.

As wombats are Australia’s natural “bush regenerators”, treating wombat mange will also have a positive impact on biodiversity.

We would also like the Minister to acknowledge the incredible work being done by grassroots and local wildlife carers, and organsiations and for their the on ground experience and learning to be utilised in wombat mange treatment programs.

We are urging you as the Minister in charge to commit to funding to tackle wombat mange.

We desperately need:

1. Investment in research into effective wombat mange control and eradication
2. Funding of grassroots organsiations, and individual licenced wildlife carers and volunteers to successfully treat mange in wombats