BARN 2016







What beautiful spring weather we are having! But remember that the sunny days brings the snakes out into the open. Gippsland vet clinics have already started treating cases of snake bite this season. If you suspect any of your furry friends have been bitten, be sure to get immediate medical help, as a speedy intervention gives the best chance of a positive outcome. Remember also that snakes are a protected species, and the local snake catcher, Geoff Lockwood, is available to assist with removals and relocations: 0428 352 203. If Geoff is unavailable, there is a list of additional Gippsland based snake catchers on the Venom Wise website:

Our local animal cruelty investigator has sent out a reminder that there is a free hotline to report issues of animal mistreatment or neglect. Calls can be made to 1800 751 770 at no charge, and callers may remain anonymous if they wish.

Big Sky animal sanctuary is holding a fundraiser barn dance on Saturday 3 December at the Strzelecki Hall, just outside of Warragul. There will be a dance caller plus live music. The event will run from 7pm until midnight, with finger food provided. BYO alcohol. Tickets are $30 per adult, or $15 for concession. Further details are here on their Facebook page  and the Big Sky team can be contacted by email:   All funds raised from the barn dance will go toward the care of the rescued animals at the sanctuary.

The AWARE Wildlife organization has an excellent page of information available regarding wildlife and heat stress. As summer approaches and the weather heats up, this webpage   will be a valuable resource for locals who come across native animals affected by heat stress and dehydration. Keep an eye out for the little ones who might need help.

Until next time… “ be kind to the kritters… ”





Thank you to everyone who submitted photos to the BARN 2016 Animal Photo Competition. There were some truly beautiful images. The winning photo was taken by Denise from Pakenham, who was also last year’s winner! Her delightful photo, shown below, looks like a scene out of a fantasy movie – a garden populated by kangaroos, rabbits and a cat, and all within a few metres of each other! Congratulations Denise. Two other photos were highly commended, and both of those were taken by Suzanne from Bayles.  Thank you to the team at the Bunyip vet clinic for selecting the winning entry. (Click on the images below to view the full size photo).


Winning photo of the 2016 competition:  Photographer – Denise Cervasio of Pakenham

First Place 2016



Highly commended – Photos by Suzanne Ashby of Bayles

13suzi     14suzi


The biggest event of the calendar year for many animal lovers is the World Vegan Day festival, and in 2016 it will take place on Sunday 23 October at the Melbourne Showgrounds. As always, it is a free event, and it is family friendly. Trains will be running directly to the Showgrounds every 30 minutes from Southern Cross station. Visit  the website  to read about what this event has to offer with regard to living a healthy, compassionate lifestyle: including food, workshops, entertainment, fashion, fitness, an art show, a kids area, and much more. Thousands of people flock to this festival every year, and while the numbers of attendees continues to grow, so does the number of stalls. With more than 170 stalls being showcased for 2016, it’s an event not to be missed.

The AWARE Wildlife Group are hosting a workshop next month to train people in basic first aid for injured wildlife. It is set for 13 November and will take place in Langwarrin. For more details, and to register for this event, visit the AWARE website.

Until next time… “ be kind to the kritters… ”





Biddy Martha’s café in Bunyip hosted a spectacular luncheon for a group of animal lovers at the start of September. Sixteen people from the West Gippsland Vegan Group met at the café to enjoy a gourmet feast of plant based food. The delicious meal options included a creamy cauliflower soup, spicy chickpea patties and a seed & grain pumpkin salad. Dessert was a gourmet chocolate cake, washed down with good coffee. The group meets monthly, and new people are always welcome at their social functions. Anybody who is interested in joining the local catch-up events should contact the group directly for further info:

In an open letter earlier this month, Australian scientists have joined Dr Jane Goodall and Sir David Attenborough in calling for an end to laboratory testing on primates. This global effort has come about after international polls consistently indicate the public’s distaste for such experimentation. The open letter and the list of signatories can be viewed at this web address.

Greyhounds have been in the news quite a lot lately, and with changes to NSW legislation affecting Greyhound racing, there are now lots of ex-racing dogs being put up for adoption. The Greyhound Adoption Program of Victoria has been doing some wonderful work for several years, and they regularly hold adoption days. If you are interested in adding a Greyhound to your family, take a look around their website, and contact them for more info:

Thursday 22 September is Remember Me Thursday – a global campaign dedicated to promoting the adoption of homeless animals. Shelters everywhere are full of animals who need to be loved, and they are missing out on finding their “forever home” simply because the general public aren’t aware that they are available. It is an important campaign, and one which questions whether anyone can justify buying a designer puppy or purebred kitten while so many worthy companion animals are needlessly euthanized, day after day. Visit the website to find out more.

With spring finally here, don’t forget that the snakes will be starting to come out of hiding to start basking in the sunshine. If you come across a snake who needs to be relocated, our closest snake catcher is Geoff Lockwood, based around Warragul, and he is available by phone: 0428 352 203

The 2016 Animal Photo Competition closes at the end of this month, 30 September. Some wonderful photos have already been received. If you’d like to get your images in, send them via email to  Winning photos from previous years, and the details of competition entry requirements, are on the BARN Photo pageThe winning photo will be selected by the team at the Bunyip vet clinic, and the winning photographer will be announced on World Animal Day – October 4. The BARN team looks forward to handing over a gift basket of goodies to the winner!

Until next time… “ be kind to the kritters… ”





The 2016 Animal Photo Competition is now in full swing. As per usual, there are no entry fees, and photographers are invited to submit up to 3 digital images for inclusion in the competition, which closes on the last day of September. Photographers must reside within West Gippsland and the photos must have been taken within the West Gippsland region. Images can be sent via email to

A new non-profit group is being launched in the local region called Pakenham Pony Rescue. They currently have eleven equine friends that are receiving some much needed TLC. Their aim is to take in abandoned, mistreated, lost and unloved ponies and rehome them after a period of care and rehabilitation. They can be contacted via email:

RACV have teamed up with Wildlife Victoria to bring information sessions to some regional communities around Victoria, and BARN is hoping we can arrange one of these wildlife sessions for members of our local community. It is likely to be towards the end of the year, so stay tuned for more information, or visit the Events page on the Wildlife Victoria website for more information:

Saturday 20 August there will be a Trivia night in Sale to raise funds for Animal Aid. The event will take place at the Criterion Hotel in MacArthur Street. Tickets are $30 per person and includes finger food and snacks. Ten people can be seated on each table. Bookings can be made by visiting the events page of the website:

The West Gippsland Vegan Group met in Yarragon earlier this month for a meal at Fozzigobbles café. The luncheon attracted approximately 25 people and everyone had a wonderful afternoon. The next gathering will be held at Biddy Martha’s café in Bunyip on Saturday 3 September. All animal lovers are welcome to join the group for lunch on that day, but places are limited so any interested persons should reserve their seats by contacting West Gippsland Vegans via email:

Until next time… “ be kind to the kritters… ”





The first day of July saw the opening of the 2016 Animal Photo Competition, now into its seventh year. As per usual, there are no entry fees, and photographers are invited to submit up to 3 digital images for inclusion in the competition, which closes on the last day of September. Photographers must reside within West Gippsland and the photos must have been taken within the West Gippsland region. We look forward to receiving your entries. Images can be sent to

Thank you to the local people who have donated towels to BARN in the past month. We will use some ourselves as bedding and will share the remainder with the local rescue groups within our network.

July is National Desexing Month all around Australia, and as always, we encourage the community to be responsible with the animals in their care and please desex them before the breeding season starts again. On that topic, BARN currently has in its care a little black and white kitten who showed up unexpectedly at a local property. We assume he was recently abandoned, as he is quite a friendly little boy. His vet-work has now been done, and he is available for adoption to the right family. Please contact BARN if you would like to know more about him:

The recent election created some interesting news and highlighted some interesting trends in the voting habits of the Australian people. The Animal Justice Party finished as the fifth most popular party overall in our local McMillan electorate. On a national level, the popularity of Derryn Hinch and his elevation to the role of Senator is likely to have a positive outcome for animals as he speaks out against a variety of injustices.

Sunday 17 July saw the launch of a cruelty-free business in the local area. Congratulations to Lorena for a successful promotional event, and you can see photos from the launch on the BARN’s photo page. The Velvety website is now live, and while all sales are online, locals will be able to bypass the postage fees and collect their orders directly from a Bunyip address. Visit the website to view a range of apparel and accessories sourced from around the globe, and only from suppliers who have proven to be ethical, sustainable, fair trade and cruelty free:

One lovely person has sent us an internet link to a short video on the Animals Australia website which is entitled: Restore Your Faith In Humanity. It is four magical minutes of footage from around the world showing a remarkable collection of animal rescues. Definitely something to warm our hearts on these cold winter days. Enjoy!

Until next time… “ be kind to the kritters… ”








The Lost Dogs home in Melbourne have launched a campaign asking people to take the Adoption Pledge. They have developed an online sign-up facility allowing people to confirm their commitment to adopting animals rather than buying from pet shops and backyard breeders. Pledging to adopt means that we are no longer supporting those who engage in irresponsible breeding. To take the pledge visit:

For those who wish to take a stronger stance against puppy farms in Australia, more information can be found at the Puppy Prisoners website:

Saturday 2 July is voting day all across Australia. With many people becoming increasingly despondent about the cruelty that is inflicted upon animals in this country, the popularity of the Animal Justice Party has continued to grow. Their values of kindness, compassion, equality and rationality are appealing to many. Our local candidate for the seat of McMillan in the upcoming election is Jennifer McAdam. Local reps have been leafletting in the West Gippsland area, but for more information on the party’s policies and goals visit the website:

Still on a political platform, earlier this year ALP MP Clare O’Neil introduced the Ethical Cosmetics Bill into parliament. Following a long term campaign spearheaded by Humane Society International and Humane Research Australia, the Government has finally agreed that by July 2017 Australia will join a growing list of countries who have banned cosmetics testing on animals, and in addition, no animal tested cosmetics will be available for sale in Australia after that time. Definitely something to celebrate!

There are two local animals requiring rehoming at the moment:

  • A cat – Tabby – who is 5 years old, desexed and microchipped. She is timid, and would be best suited to a quiet home with no other cats. If you would like to meet Tabby please contact Mandii on 0427 721 786.
  • And a Saint Bernard dog – Romeo – who has just turned one year of age. He is happy, healthy and friendly, is microchipped but not yet desexed. If you would like to meet Romeo please contact Marcelo on 0413 964 773.

An exciting new event has been planned for next month, supported by the West Gippsland Vegan Group— and everyone is invited! Local lady, Lorena, originally from Barcelona in Spain, will be launching her new online business from the Bunyip Hall on Sunday 17 July between 1pm and 4pm. Lorena will be selling apparel and accessories sourced from all over the globe, and only from suppliers whose practices have proven to be ethical, fair trade, cruelty-free and sustainable. The event will be a fun way for like-minded locals to mingle and support a great initiative. We wish Lorena every success with her business. Enquiries can be sent to:

The first day of July sees the opening of the 2016 Animal Photo Competition, now into its seventh year. As per usual, there are no entry fees, and photographers are invited to submit up to 3 digital images for inclusion in the competition, which closes on the last day of September. Photographers must reside within West Gippsland and the photos must have been taken within the West Gippsland region. Images can be sent to

Until next time… “ be kind to the kritters… ”



And don’t forget to vote on July 2:

Below is a guide to which parties are thinking about animal issues:






Apologies to anyone who has tried to email the BARN in the past fortnight. Our mailbox was full and was rejecting new messages, but this has been rectified and we are now fully functional again:

A recently formed animal rescue farm in Strzelecki, Big Sky Sanctuary, is holding an open day on Sunday 29 May. They are located on the Warragul-Korumburra road. Their event will run from midday until about 3 pm and provides an opportunity for visitors to meet their animals and learn about their wonderful work. Further details are on their Facebook page:

Sunday 5 June is World Environment Day, which was initiated many years ago by the United Nations. This year the theme is on the illegal trade in wildlife. Damien Mander, a Mornington boy who is now based in Zimbabwe, is currently in Australia on a speaking tour to promote his organization, the International Anti-Poaching Foundation. His team do an amazing job of protecting endangered African wildlife from illegal poachers. For more details and to support his excellent work go to:

Next month sees the release of a new film which has been much anticipated amongst the animal loving community.. The Last Pig is a documentary which features stunning videography and tells a profound story of a pig farmer who had a change of heart and chose to stop sending his pigs to slaughter. The trailer for the film is now available to watch online at:

A local family is urgently seeking foster care for two handsome young cats. They are desexed brothers and have lovely personalities. Foster care is required until January next year, at which time the family will move into a larger dwelling and will be able to take them home again. If you are able to help, or would like more details about the boys, please contact their guardian, Katie, to discuss this opportunity further :  0416 821 000

Finally, Bunyip’s local Heart Foundation walking group meets at the Uniting Church on Nash road in Bunyip each Wednesday morning at 11:00 am. Remember that dogs are always welcome in this group, so feel free to join in the weekly exercise with your furry friend.

Until next time… “ be kind to the kritters… ”





April 24 – 30 is World Week for Animals in Laboratories. National surveys consistently reveal that a majority of Australians are opposed to the cruel practices that are carried out in research laboratories using animals, however a great number of people still unwittingly contribute financially to those very practices when they donate to some of the most common fundraising campaigns. For members of the public who wish to support medical research without contributing to animal cruelty, a list of progressive and ethical medical charities can be found at the website of Humane Charities Australia. Some well known names can be found there including the Fred Hollows Foundation, the Children’s Cancer Centre Foundation, the AIDS Trust, Make-A-Wish Australia, Beyond Blue and Yooralla. To view the full list, or to download a Smartphone App, please visit:

Places are still available for the AWARE Wildlife workshop day on 30 April. It is a wildlife rescue and transport training day. The cost to non-members is $55 and it is a full day event – (which often means 10 hours or more in duration). These events are excellent value and the quality of the training is of a high standard. More details are on the website:

Sunday 15 May is the day of the RSPCA Milllion Paws Walk. Once again there will be an event held in Warragul, starting at the Linear Park Trail on the corner of Burke street and Anderson street. Registration starts at 1:00pm, with the walk commencing at 2:00pm. More information can be found at the main website:

Are you looking for a new animal friend? There lots of animals needing homes in the local area and we can put you in touch with the relevant organisations who are helping to find them homes. At present in the local area, there is a very pretty cat and a friendly Saint Bernard dog, (from different circumstances), who are both needing new homes. Contact BARN if you would like to know more:   Alternatively, visit Pet Rescue on the internet and browse the available animals in your area:

The Mange Management team are still using ice-cream container lids and washing powder scoops in their treatment kits for wombats who are affected by mange. If you have any of these items available please let us know and we can arrange to collect them and pass them on:

The BARN will be hosting another catch-up day in the coming weeks. Note that not all BARN events are advertised to the public, so if you would like to be kept up to date with the details of all of our upcoming functions and gatherings, flick us an email and we’ll keep you in the loop:

Until next time… “ be kind to the kritters… ”





BARN must apologise for the absent newsletter during February. The technical difficulties have now been resolved and we should be back on track for another year.

The Australia Day catch up in the Bunyip Hall was a successful event. A friendly group of folks from the West Gippsland area gathered together to chat about animals, enjoy a delicious afternoon tea, and swap notes about where to find various cruelty-free products in the local region. The network is growing bigger each year and the cruelty-free products are becoming much easier to source.

At last, we are enjoying some much needed rain for the start of Autumn, and the Autumn season always begins with Clean Up Australia Day in early March. We must remember to “reduce, reuse, recycle and repurpose” whenever we can to minimize landfill, and this will help both our natural environment and the beautiful animals who dwell within it.

The BARN lending library has added quite a few new DVD titles in recent weeks. If anyone would like to borrow a film relating to animal rescue or cruelty free living, all titles are available to loan at no charge, (within the Bunyip area). Contact BARN via email to view a list of titles:

Sunday 20 March is the Ride for the Animals charity cycling event, raising funds for Animal Aid. Participants can choose between 30 and 95 kilometre stints. The ride starts at the Animal Aid shelter in Sale and ends with a celebration in Bairnsdale. More details:

The AWARE Wildlife group is holding a workshop day on 30 April which aims to train people in the skills of wildlife rescue and transport. The cost to non-members is $55 and it is a full day event – (which often means 10 hours or more in duration). These events are excellent value and the quality of the training is of a high standard. More details are on the website:

The BARN team sends an email notice to its mailing list approximately once a month. If anyone would like to be added to the mailing list, to be kept up to date with additional news, feel free to let us know:

Until next time… “ be kind to the kritters… ”







We apologise, but there is no newsletter for February due to technical difficulties with a naughty computer!!





Happy New Year! How quickly the time is passing. School is almost back and summer is half-way gone. The recent hot weather has been hard on many animals living outdoors, and it is with sadness that we announce the passing of a well known figure from the local area – Miss Charlotte, the pig, from Bunyip-Modella road. Anyone travelling through to Iona, or heading to the Pony Club grounds on Pound road, would be very familiar with this old lady.

Charlotte and her companion, CeeCee, were rescued as piglets in January 2001, saved from imminent slaughter by a team of four rescuers. The two girls arrived in Bunyip in January 2004 and lived out their lives with a local family. While CeeCee left this world at age 11 and a half, Charlotte made it to an incredible 15 years. Charlotte enjoyed many visitors in her final weeks, and was treated to lots of apples and acorns as her time drew near. Many locals have asked after her in recent months, so we know she will be sadly missed.

Charlotte in the oats          1


A local family is looking to take in a companion horse, possibly for an occasional gentle ride around the paddock, but more so to be given a grooming routine and regular human attention. If you have a mature horse who is lonely and would like to be pampered by a sweet lady, please contact Tony: 0428 412 161

Valentine’s Day is coming up next month. Are you looking for somebody to love? BARN has a sweet cat in care who is looking for a home. She prefers a quiet indoor life and will reward you with cuddles. All her vet work is done. Please contact us if you would like to meet her:

BARN has been involved in organising an event at the Bunyip Hall (supper room) for the Australia Day public holiday. It is a networking opportunity for the local community, and will basically be a “meet and greet” for West Gippsland animal lovers. It will take place between 1pm and 3pm on that day. Everyone is welcome. Afternoon tea will be provided. Our team looks forward to catching up with some old friends and making some new ones.

Australia Day edit 260116



Charlotte 1



Until next time… “ be kind to the kritters… ”