Feisty Wombat rescued from debris on the swollen Victoria River

Animal rescuers rescued a wombat stuck alone on a pile of sticks on a raging river in Molesworth, Victoria on the morning of Saturday 22 October amid flooding in the region.

Terra Mater Wildlife Shelter said they received a call about the stranded animal the night before, but it was too dangerous to carry out a rescue in the dark. The shelter said it was an “anxious night, hoping his island wasn’t wiped out.”

This Terra Mater Wildlife Shelter & Five Freedoms Animal Rescue video shows rescuers lifting the exuberant wombat to rescue him from sticks on the Goulburn River Saturday morning, before releasing the animal.

Terra Mater Wildlife Shelter said: “We were able to assess her, luckily she was healthy and unharmed, but exhausted from spending who knows how much time on the island.” The wombat was released about 300 meters from the river on higher ground, the group said.

A local political candidate identified two of the rescuers such as Manfred Zabinskas, of Five Freedoms Animal Rescue and East Trentham Wildlife Shelter, and Tania Begg of Terra Mater Wildlife Shelter.

October 22 is World Wombat Day. Credit: Terra Mater Wildlife Shelter & Five Freedoms Animal Rescue via Storyful

Video transcription


So that’s where the [INAUDIBLE] of the river is normally.

It’s right here. That’s where the willows are.


So this is normally just a river.



That is–

Oh alright.

–1.5 high.

Everything is fine. [INAUDIBLE]

Well, my thought is that if I put a net in front of it …


Yes Madam. We will do it on the other side … [INAUDIBLE]

Wait, I think I got it. I think–

And I have it.


You got it. You have them both. You have both. You have both.


Okay, Kenny, do you have the rope?

Next tool. I think we will have to use the network.

Get on the net, get on the net.

Everything is fine. [INAUDIBLE]

[INAUDIBLE] debris.

Got it, got it, got it, got it?

Come on, on plan.

Okay, get the net.

I can’t reach it.

You’re all right.

[INAUDIBLE] are you biting my brand new net?

Yes. Before and after.

That’s all. I know you want to bite me. Oh. Wait, I’ll take [INAUDIBLE] now.

Here we are.

Oh. Lift that net. Pass me that bag.






Got it, okay. I’ll sit down for a minute if you guys want …

[INAUDIBLE] Take a breath.

High five, [INAUDIBLE] Well done.

Well done guys.

I expected it to be smaller.

And less exuberant. So that’s a handful. I assume it’s a him, we haven’t even checked. But yeah, it’s amazing how they get some adrenaline when handled. Because she was quite docile about the amount of debris. But somehow it worked in our favor. We needed him to move to put the noose under him. So it worked the way it was intended.


Well done.

It’s difficult [INAUDIBLE] Oh.

No, we can probably take it …




We have it.

Good boy or girl. Good wombat.

I left the flashlight in the car. [INAUDIBLE]

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