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Kookaburra sits in the big red truck
When Mildura firefighter Bradley Clarkson saw an injured and clearly distressed kookaburra from the side of the road, he couldn’t bring himself to "just drive on by."
“We were driving back to the station and I could see something in the gutter, but it wasn’t until we went past that I realised it was a kookaburra,” he said.
“I did a U-turn, then another U-turn, then jumped out and grabbed it.
“You just can’t drive past that kind of thing.”
Brad, who has worked as a career firefighter at Mildura for three years now, said the kookaburra was “hopping around in the gutter” and looked like it might have been clipped by a car.
“I thought he might make more of a fuss but he seemed happy for me to take him into the car,” said Brad.
The injured bird's ride in the fire truck took it straight to the Mildura Veterinary Hospital, where Brad's girlfriend works as a dog groomer.
“The guys and girls there are really good, and they do a lot of good stuff for wildlife – so I knew where to go,” the firefighter said, adding that the rescued kookaburra has made a strong enough recovery to be released into the wild this week.
After a picture of Brad with the kookaburra did the rounds on social media, the vet's received further kudos from locals familiar with their work.
According to one Facebook comment:
“Well done Mildura Veterinary Hospital for working tirelessly with all number of wildlife carers when injured or misplaced animals are presented to the hospital. This work is not funded but an example of MVH acting ethically in care of our native wildlife.”
Brad mentioned that he himself was still feeling a little sore after completing relay legs across three days in the Mildura to Melbourne (M2M) Relay Run, held in memory of Senior Station Officer Damien Burke.
Brad was one of 20 CFA and MFB firefighters to complete in the relay and ran a total of 17 kms in the Charlton to Melbourne stretch.
He said the run had been an amazing experience for those who had worked alongside the respected firefighter.
The 563 kilometre journey came to a close last Saturday 3 September in Melbourne’s CBD, where the relay runners took on the final challenge of completing the annual Melbourne Firefighter Stair Climb event.
Money raised through both initiatives will go towards an overall donation for the Royal Children’s Hospital. Read more: http://news.cfa.vic.gov.au/news/mildura-firefighters-run-563km-to-melbourne.html