• Emu undergoes emergency surgery

  • X-Ray of Emu showing foreign bodies ingested

  • Emu post-surgery at RSPCA Qld Wildlife Hospital

A juvenile Emu found wandering the streets of Eight Mile Plains on Wednesday, April 24, 2019, has been successfully captured by RSPCA Queensland

Emergency surgery was performed on the Emu at RSPCA Queensland's Wildlife Hospital at Wacol, to remove metal objects from his stomach. 

RSPCA Veterinarian Dr. Meghan Burrows performed the 2.5 hour surgery on “Digger” and says he’s extremely lucky. 

“The Emu had ingested the foreign objects some time ago and as a result they had caused significant damage to the bird,” she said.

“Thankfully the surgery went well, however it is not out of the woods yet. The next seven days will be critical and we are all hoping for the best. If this bird was left untreated it would have most certainly died a slow and painful death. It is not very often we see Emus at our Wacol clinic, so we were all excited to see this bird come into care. However we wish it was under better circumstances.”

RSPCA Chief Inspector Daniel Young said, “We have identified the person who was keeping this bird and we will continue to investigate the matter. We will also be notifying the Department of Environmental and Science (DES) as we believe the bird was kept at the Brisbane property unlawfully.

“We are extremely disappointed that an animal such as this was kept in suburbia and as a result has now had to receive emergency surgery. This should come as a good reminder that we should appreciate our amazing wildlife, but ensure we do not take them out of their natural environment. Native wildlife can be extremely difficult to care for and should be left to those that have the expert knowledge and experience to care for them. The Animal Care and Protection Act 2001 does not exclude wildlife. If you have wildlife in your care then you have a duty of care under the Act to ensure you take appropriate measures to provide for the animal needs.” 

RSPCA Inspectors are seeing more and more native animals kept in captivity in a poor conditions in urban areas. The most common animals being reptiles such as snakes, lizards and turtles. The RSPCA is urging people to seek the appropriate permits to care for wildlife. If you do come into contact with wildlife enjoy it from a distance, and if it appears sick or injured please call 1300 ANIMAL.