WILDLIFE carers have found a joey in a bloody heap with a bullet hole through its body and its throat slit only 100 metres from the sanctuary that’s there to protect it.
Kangaloola Wildlife Shelter owner Glenda Elliott said Sunday night’s horrific discovery was a clear case of animal cruelty.
She said there was evidence the joey had been dragged behind a vehicle.
“They’ve got no respect for the bush, no respect for the animals. They come in just to destroy,” Ms Elliott said.
“They”, she said, were the people she and other carers heard camping near the sanctuary on Saturday night.
They heard yelling, and the revving of motorcycles and cars.
Ms Elliott went to the campsite, about 100 metres from the sanctuary near Yackandandah, on Sunday to clean up the rubbish that was left behind.
She found mattresses, broken bottles and other rubbish — and the joey.
“On one side of it, the fur is all gone. It’s as if it’s been dragged. There’s a bullet hole right through the other side,” Ms Elliott said.
She said the joey probably was one that she had cared for.
The incident has been reported to Beechworth and Yackandandah police.
They have said they would investigate, along with the Department of Sustainability and Environment.
DSE senior wildlife officer Leigh Murray went to the scene and viewed photos of the joey.
He said it was possible the joey was shot before it suffered other injuries.
Mr Murray urged anyone who saw or heard anything, or took note of registration plates or descriptions, to assist with the investigation.
He said the perpetrators could face serious charges under the Wildlife Act attracting big fines and even jail.
The incident comes after native animals were found slaughtered in the Stanley State Forest at Christmas.
Residents said they found a decapitated kangaroo and another with its ears cut off.
Mr Murray said he had spoken to residents in the area but no one had been able to assist his inquiries.
Anyone with information should phone the DSE on 136 186.