GRAPHIC CONTENT WARNING: Hunt for vile animal abuser who SHOT a mother possum in the eye – as experts warn of a surge in attacks
- Bonnie the brushtail possum brought into Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital
- Discovered she had been shot by three rifle pellets upon further inspection
- Zoo has received three separate incidents of animals being shot by rifle pellets
- There are rewards for anyone who comes forward about crimes against wildlife
A mother brushtail possum has been shot in the eye with a rifle pellet gun by mystery thugs, as investigations are underway to find the culprits.
Bonnie had been rushed in the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital for a check-up on a skin issue, but after further analysis, staff noticed she had received extensive damage to her right eye.
X-rays revealed that she had been shot with three rifle pellets.
A mother brushtail possum (pictured) was shot in the eye with a rifle pellet gun in Queensland
The incident had taken place some time go, with the mother possum needing to undergo surgery.
Animal welfare experts are now concerned there has been a rising number of similar cases, with three recent incidents where animals were targeted and shot with a rifle pellet gun.
Wildlife Warriors has teamed up with Crime Stoppers Queensland and Australia Zoo to reward members of the public who come forward with information on crimes against wildlife.
The mother possum was brought into the hospital carrying a baby joey that has been named Jela (pictured)
An injured joey (pictured) has been one of many that the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital has taken care of
If you notice any suspicious activity or come across injured wildlife, make sure to contact Crime Stoppers Queensland on 1800 333 000 or Australia Zoo on (07) 5436 2000.
It comes after a group of native water dragons were shot with darts in a treasured wetland.
The lizards were found impaled with homemade darts in Warriewood on Sydney’s Northern Beaches in January after locals noticed the injured reptiles lying by the water.
Officers managed to catch the creatures and remove the darts, measuring between two and three centimetres, from the hurt animals – with two requiring further treatment at a local vet.
The possum’s injuries come just weeks after sick thugs shot native water dragons (pictured) with darts in a treasured wetland
Police said in a statement they were aided by volunteers as they attempted to catch the animals and remove the darts.
‘The officer, assisted by volunteers, captured the water dragons and removed several darts – between 2cm and 3cm long – which were embedded in their bodies,’ a NSW Police spokesperson said.
‘The injuries were not life-threatening, with only one requiring further treatment at a local vet. All four water dragons have since been returned to the wetlands.
The police’s Facebook post garnered nearly 1,000 comments, with people condemning the actions of the criminals.
‘Throw the book at the depraved creeps – I hope you catch them soon,’ one woman wrote.
‘Poor things – hope they are caught and suitably punished,’ another replied.
A woman named Katie, who lives in the Northern Beaches region, said she found the destroyed shell in the same Warriewood wetlands location as the injured dragons