We are looking for any potential contacts of people who work or volunteer in wildlife shelters, vets, zoos, sanctuaries or other organizations that deal with wild animals as we are hoping to collect any dead possums (both common ringtail and common brushtail, within VIC only at this stage) that come into their workplace.
The reason why we ask for dead possums is that we had a number of dead powerful owls in 2021 and 2020 so we undertook a toxicology study on them and found that over 80% of these dead owls contained rodenticides (read the paper).
This is obviously really worrying especially given powerful owls don’t eat rats or mice and primarily eat possums. Our thinking is that the possums (especially brushtails) are consuming the rat poison and therefore we are now doing a study examining dead possums for any traces of rodenticides.
We are after as many dead possums (we have all the required permits to collect them) as possible so if you could help us out that would be great. Critical to this is that the possums have a location of where they were found.
Please read this flyer outlining what we are doing and the information required for any dead possums that come in.
For more information please feel free to contact A/Prof. Raylene Cooke. Please help by forwarding this to anyone else who may be able to help.