TOO CUTE: Police officers care for orphaned joey "Coconut"
FOR about an hour and a half last Friday, Senior Constable Amit Singh and partner Constable Reagan Learoyd became unexpected carers of a joey whose real mother died after being hit by a car.
Snr Con Singh said he and his partner were doing patrols of break-and-enter hotspots of Hervey Bay when they came across a traffic jam on Pialba Burrum Heads Rd.
After getting a bit closer, the pair saw a massive female kangaroo, standing in the middle of the road unable to move because of her injuries.
"We had to stop the flow of traffic on both sides as it was dark and it posed a safety hazard for us," Snr Con Singh said.
"We observed that the kangaroo was badly injured and could hardly walk.
"We managed to get the animal off the road and I then had to euthanise it."
After moving from Fiji to Queensland a few years ago, Snr Con Singh said he was taught to check a dead marsupial's pouch for babies.
"I couldn't feel anything so I just started to walk off," he said.
"But something in my heart made me check it again."
Upon his surprise, the small, hairless joey started to wriggle under the officer's hand.
"I've seen a baby born and stuff like that, but yeah my partner and I got kind of teary when we got him out," he said.
"What a cute little joey."
The joey was named Coconut by Snr Con Singh.
By this time it was after 6pm, and only 17 degrees.
With the help of a man from Torbanlea who had pulled over the assist the two officers with the joey, Coconut was wrapped up and placed in the police car with the heater on to keep him warm.
The two officers called the RSPCA who organised for a carer to come and pick the little guy up.
Snr Con Singh said he decided to name the joey Coconut because it reminded him of his home in Fiji.
He said the whole experienced was refreshing for him.
"We get so caught up in crime and all of that, but to see and meet those animal carers, to see the good people in the community, it was so positive," he said.
"As police we do deal with the bad in society, but we also know the good people and helpers are there, like the person who pulled up and gave us a hand, you cannot plan for those kind of things.
"It touched our heart, we spoke about it after we dropped him off, we sent photos to all of our friends, everyone thought it was awesome; it was like winning a gold medal."