Plans for a wildlife hospital for the Northern Rivers are a step closer with approval for Crown land to be used for the project.
The Northern Rivers is a biodiversity hotspot and the hospital, which will require development approval from Ballina Shire Council, will treat and rehabilitate a wide variety of injured, sick and orphaned wildlife, including birds, marsupials and reptiles.
The aim will be to nurse animals back to health and return them to the wild whenever possible.
The hospital would be located on a 2.39 hectare parcel of Crown land in Lindendale Road at Wollongbar, where it would be co-located next to the Wollongbar Primary Industries Institute.
Northern Rivers Wildlife Hospital chair Ninian Gemmell welcomed consent for the use of Crown land for the proposed hospital.
“The land being offered is in an excellent central location with good road access to service the Northern Rivers,” Mr Gemmell said.
“There is intense need for a well-located site in the region to deal with around 4,000 wildlife casualties that occur each year. Currently the nearest general wildlife hospital is at Currumbin in Queensland.
“The project has been designed closely with the network of wildlife carers in the region who are on the frontline of wildlife rescue and care every day.
“A dedicated wildlife hospital will save thousands of injured and sick animals, and minimise the need to euthanise them. We also aim to operate as research and public education hub, and promote the preservation of habitat in the region.”