WIRES Introduces Rescue Course for Sea Snakes
Saturday, May 6, 2023
WIRES has launched a new Sea Snake Rescue Course which will be available nationally for registered wildlife rescue organisations from 12 May.
This advanced rescue course is part of WIRES plans to increase rescue response and welfare outcomes for marine reptiles. It explores the safe methods of rescuing and transporting displaced, injured and/or sick sea snakes. The course will be fully delivered online.
“Australia is home to over 30 of the 70 known sea snake species worldwide,” said WIRES Chief Operating Officer Kyla Shelley. “Some species are listed as endangered, critically endangered or vulnerable, the status of many is unknown due to a lack of data, and other populations are believed to be significantly declining due to complex threats including disease, fishing, loss of habitat, coastal developments and pollution. Sea snakes are also venomous, so it is critically important that they are assisted by trained rescuers.”
The course covers the following specialist topic areas:
- Sea snake biology, including key definitions, identifying features and terminology
- Species identification and distribution
- Health problems and threats
- WHS risk involved in rescuing and transporting sea snakes
- Rescue scenarios
- Appropriate handling and transport methods
- Sea snake transfer and reporting processes post rescue
The course is only available to carers who are already trained and authorised to rescue venomous snakes.
The Sea Snake Rescue Course has been developed based on the Code of Practice for Injured and Sick Sea Turtles and Sea Snakes.
The course will be free of charge for the first month after launch for eligible wildlife organisations entering a training grant agreement. It will be available for approved participants long term at $30 per person.