The bushfires that have been raging across Australia since September do not stop terrifying the entire world. Photos of animals burned and injured, entire areas scorched, and destroyed homes have saddened the planet.
Chris Dickman, an ecologist at the University of Sydney, explained that his original estimate of 480 million animals was exclusive to the state of New South Wales, and added:
“The original figure ― the 480 million ― was based on mammals, birds, and reptiles for which we do have densities, and that figure now is a little bit out of date. It’s over 800 million given the extent of the fires now ― in New South Wales alone.
If 800 million sounds a lot ― it’s not all the animals in the firing line.”
On January 3, a bushfire on Kangaroo Island devastated the place, killing two people and over 20, 000 koalas, and destroying over 50 homes.
Even though recovery efforts are underway, according to South Australian Emergency Services Minister Corey Wingard, the firefighters fear that the upcoming hot weather will flare up the fire again.
The fire devastated over 160,000 hectares of the island, including the Flinders Chase National Park.
The ecologist at The Kangaroo Island Land for Wildlife organization, Heidi Groffen, highlighted the extent of damage done by the fire:
“People call this place a little Noah’s Ark. The island is a refuge. This is the largest fire we have seen in a long time.”
The following before and after photos reveal the effects of the bushfire on the island.
A photo taken by a man named Aaron Coleman in 2017, revealing a long road, bordered by greenery, that extends into the distance, can be compared to the one taken recently, of the same road, but this time, surrounded by black trees on a grey land.
Also, take a look at the contrasting images of a million-dollar luxury lodge, which has been now completely destroyed by the fire.
The lodge’s owners, James, and Hayley Baillie, said that they cannot now estimate the reopening date of the lodge, but they intend to rebuild it and ‘contribute to the economic and social recovery of the broader Kangaroo Island community’.
According to South Australian Country Fire Service chief officer, Mark Jones, 135 firefighters remain on the ground, working day and night to ensure the conditions do not aggravate.
He explained that there is ‘still a large fire which is not controlled’, but they were ‘well prepared’ for Thursday if there’s another outbreak.
“The island is resilient and has started to rebuild, but the emergency period is not over.”