James Fitzgerald is the owner of Irwin’s Corner, a property located approximately 50km north east of Cooma, NSW. The property is a dedicated wildlife sanctuary, and used for wildlife rehabilitation and education. James has established Two Thumbs Wildlife Trust to ensure the sanctuary is financially secure and safe for native wildlife into the future, as well as being open to local wildlife groups as both a pre-release and release site for Australian wildlife species. James is also the koala coordinator for Wildcare NSW. Irwin’s Corner was named after Steve Irwin. A mutual love of reptiles caused James to first meet Steve in 1991, in the days before Steve became famous. In James’ words, “Steve was a very genuine and supportive person and the day we lost him, was a loss beyond compare.”
The sanctuary covers 56 hectares of high mountain country descending to open creek flats with eucalypts trees, native grasses and bushes being the predominant vegetation types. The sanctuary adjoins James’ other two Wildlife Land Trust properties, Hammer’s Hill Wildlife Sanctuary (312 hectares) and Kalandan Wildlife Sanctuary (356 hectares). Together these properties create 724 hectares or 1810 acres of safe land for wildlife.
Wildlife species known to be present on the property include koalas (Phascolarctos cinereus), wallaroos (Macropus robustus), swamp wallabies (Wallabia bicolor), red-necked wallabies (Macropus rufogriseus), eastern grey kangaroos (Macropus giganteus), laughing kookaburras (Dacelo novaeguineae), lyrebirds (Menura novaehollandiae), crimson rosellas (Platycercus elegans) and Rosenberg’s goannas (Varanus rosenbergi).