A woman has suffered a collapsed lung, broken ribs and other internal injuries after being attacked by a kangaroo at Cypress Gardens on the Darling Downs, south-west of Brisbane, on Saturday night.
Linda Smith, 64, who has been a wildlife carer for the past 15 years, was feeding kangaroos at her property when the attack happened.
“Around 30 kangaroos and wallabies come in each night to be fed,” Mrs Smith said.
“We feed them a mix of grain and chaff as with the drought there’s nothing out there.
“This one kangaroo came in and I thought it was golly gosh, one of the kangaroos we have raised. He was a huge grey, would have been at least 6 foot.”
She said her husband Jim started feeding the kangaroo when he turned on him.
“Jim was on the ground and the kangaroo just kept at him,” she said.
“I went outside to try and help him and took a broom and a piece of bread, but he knocked the broom out of my hand, then attacked me.
“I got him off Jim and Jim got up and I managed to grab a piece of wood to defend myself with that.
“Then my son came out to try and help me and hit him over the head with a shovel.
“I have never been one to want to hurt animals.”
It’s understood the kangaroo then retreated back into the bush, and was well and truly gone by the time emergency services arrived.
Paramedic Stephen Johns said her injuries were critical, but she was conscious and lucky to be alive.
“A collapsed lung and severe internal injuries are critical. And if the kangaroo was able to continue to inflict injuries, her life would have been in danger,” he said.
Attack ‘an act of nature’
Despite her injuries, Mrs Smith said she understood what happened “was an act of nature” and did not want the animal to be hunted down and killed.
“When you’re a carer you learn the dangers of all the other kangaroos and you’re always aware they are wild animals,” she said.
“I am always careful, especially of the males. It’s breeding time so they can be more aggressive.
“I don’t want this kangaroo to be hunted down and killed, I love animals.
“I do understand what happened but I have never seen one that aggressive – it was in there for a fight and it wouldn’t back off.”
Mrs Smith said she first became a wildlife carer after discovering a joey, which had lost its mother on her 60-acre property about 20 minutes out of Millmerran.
Since then she has cared for many more joeys including ones she affectionately named Honey, Cleopatra, Floyd, Golly Gosh, Sweet Pea and Dick Tracy.
Mrs Smith underwent surgery on Sunday afternoon and is in a stable condition at the Toowoomba hospital.