Sara Tilling and Gary Henderson are the owners of Illawambra, a property located in Yowrie, approximately 15kms west of Cobargo, New South Wales. The property is a dedicated wildlife sanctuary, and the native bushland had remained untouched for several decades.
In 2019 the property was decimated by the Badja Creek fire with almost 100% of the wildlife perishing. Sara and Gary have worked hard over the past 2.5 years to repopulate the land predominately with eastern grey kangaroos, swamp and red-necked wallabies, bare-nosed wombats and brushtail possums.
Sara and Gary plan to continue managing the property as a sanctuary, rehabilitation and release site for native wildlife, offering wildlife educational experiences for visitors. They are also pursuing permanent protection for the land through a Voluntary Conservation Agreement.
The property covers approximately 340 hectares of eucalypt woodland and native grassland, backing on to Wadbilliga National Park. Wandella creek intersects the property and feeds into Illawambra Dam. The site also features seven smaller dams providing water and habitat for wildlife.
The property has high ecological value and a wide range of threatened flora and fauna are believed to be present in the area. Wildlife known to live on the property includes eastern grey kangaroos (Macropus giganteus), swamp (Wallabia bicolor) and red-necked (Macropus rufogriseus) wallabies, spotted-tailed quolls (Dasyurus maculatus) and bare-nosed wombats (Vombatus ursinus).