Why donkeys kick ass

HEIKE Mack-Behle is a woman with a mission - to change the way people think of the humble donkey.

Ms Mack-Behle runs the Destiny Boonah Eco Cottages and Donkey Farm, where she cares for 25 donkeys and had helped re-home hundreds of others.


Heike Mack-Behle from Destiny Boonah Donkey Farm with Sammy, a long haired donkey. Heike is committed to donkey rescue and welfare.
Heike Mack-Behle from Destiny Boonah Donkey Farm with Sammy, a long haired donkey. Heike is committed to donkey rescue and welfare. Claudia Baxter

"I started this in 2003, in part to rescue donkeys and bring them back to health and re-home and relocate them," she said.


By her own estimation, in the past nine years she has moved more than 500 donkeys, but that wasn't enough.

"I realised I had to go back to grass roots to help the donkey, to lift its profile and to life its image," she said. "People do not pay respect to the animal."

The domestic donkey was once a farm and pack animal, ridden by Jesus on Palm Sunday, and used by Private John Simpson to save Australian soldiers at Gallipoli.

But somewhere along the way Ms Mack-Behle said a lot of people lost respect for the animal.

"People have totally forgotten about these animals - how hard they worked on farms, how hard they worked to develop Australia," she said.

To remind people of what the donkey has done she has started running education seminars and hosting farm stays where people can stay with her herd.

And her hard work is beginning to pay off.

Up to 100 people every week from schools and seniors groups visit her to listen to her tell the stories of donkeys are the ASSquestrian Centre.

Ms Mack-Behle believes she may be turning the corner due to the length of her waiting list of people hoping to be the new keepers of a donkey.

"There is a big demand for them on wool farms, on dairy farms and on horse studs for foals to protect them against foxes, dingoes and wild dogs.

"I'm not saying this is the solution to wild dogs, but it definitely will help."

Topics:  donkeys

Swanbank rubbish fire will burn for days

QFES, Fire, Fire TruckPhoto Bev Lacey / The Chronicle

'Football field' size green waste rubbish pile caught alight

Growlers roar at Riverfire

AIR SHOW: Squadron Leader Daniel Wilson (left) and Flight Lieutenant Mark Elsey will be flying the Air Force's newest aircraft, the EA-18G Growler, at this year's Riverfire.

New arrivals to soar in annual city celebration

Killed student’s final hour pieced together at trial

Korean student Eujnji Ban was found dead in 2013.

Shirt so “saturated with blood” it turned from white to maroon.

Local Partners

Coast mum helped others 24 hours before house fire 'took everything'

NIKKI Cooper loves helping others and admits she doesn't know how to accept help too well, but she's been forced to do so after her home went up in flames.

'I need to s***': Why this unlucky dad copped a $1200 fine

Police revealed the reason this dad gave for his offence. Sheesh.

Range Rover Velar launches charm offensive

The new Range Rover Velar R-Dynamic 1st Edition.

Craig Duff finds Range Rover is onto another good thing.

Make your daughter a 'breastpert'

Emma Scrimshaw, 32, had a lump removed from her breast when she was 20.

Mothers are being urged to teach children to detect breast cancer

'You have to be sexy to wear this'

Amanda Cardoso says the small bikini has always been popular in Brazil, where she is from.

Cheeky summer beachwear trend leaves little to the imagination

It's hard yakka beating bowel cancer, but Bob did it

Operation Hard Yakka founder, Bob Davis has announced his run for senate in the Jacqui Lambie Network. Photo: Valerie Horton / Fraser Coast Chronicle

There wasn't much to indicate Bob Davis was unwell.