Scouts help protect the possums

October 15, 2020 BY

Some of the possum houses and dreys made by the Modewarre and Winchelsea Scouts.

THE 1st Modewarre and Winchelsea Scouts constructed possum houses and dreys to help Winchelsea Wildlife Shelter and the animals they care for.

The houses and dreys not only help the possums while they are at the shelter but go with them when they re-enter the wild, so they have some familiar territory.

Having been confined to meeting via Zoom due to COVID-19, Modewarre and Winchelsea Scouts decided to invite some community members to their virtual meetings to teach them a bit more about nature.

Winchelsea Wildlife owner Barb Rayland was one of those they asked. She said she was pleased with the scouts’ eagerness to help protect the local wildlife.

“They wanted to know what they could do, and they were kind enough to make about 10 wooden brushtail boxes and they also made about 10 dreys, which are made out of the hanging baskets. You make a little ball out of them and put a hole in it so the little ringtails can get in and out,” said Ms Reyland.

“It was absolutely sensational. I was absolutely gobsmacked. It’s especially helpful because this time of the year, we’re getting very close to releasing a lot of possums back into the wild, and being Spring, a lot of animals are having babies, so we often get orphaned, displaced, and injured wildlife coming in.”

While they could not meet as a group, the scouts had sourced and delivered the materials needed to make the houses and dreys to their members.

Modewarre and Winchelsea Scouts leader Marie McPadden said the project had enabled the group to try something new during lockdown.

“Normally around Father’s Day, we do a Father’s Night where we get the fathers to come along to the hall for some activities.”

“On Zoom we came together and played a few games and then the scouts and their dads went off and made the dreys out of the two planter baskets put together, then having seen a kit form that I had put together they went off again with their kits and put them together. Then over the next week, they painted them.”