Australia’s Deadly Wildfires have Killed 1 Billion Native Wildlife Animals

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Wildlife rescuer Simon Adamczyk helping a koala to safety. At least 25,000 koalas have died in the past month. (Photo by David Mariuz)

Throughout the course of over a month since December of 2019, Australia has been experiencing severe wildfires caused by record-breaking temperatures and drastic periods of drought. 

A natural weather phenomenon called The Indian Ocean Dipole has caused a hot, dry spell across Australia, resulting in frequent flooding and landslides in other areas affected by the Indian Ocean Dipole. With the rise of Carbon Dioxide levels, Australia has become increasingly hotter over recent decades and will continue to do so at the hands of climate change. 

The most intense wildfires are located along stretches of the eastern and southern coast where one billion animals have died at the hands of the fire, smoke inhalation, or starvation. Twenty-five people have died, and thousands are left homeless. Fires are still being put out as of mid-January 2020 where roughly 140 fires still burn. 

Kangaroo Island, located in the state of South Australia 112 km (70 mi) southwest of Adelaide, has been severely affected by the deadly fires. Kangaroo Island is said to resemble Noah’s Ark for its unique environment, and it’s one of the most important wildlife sanctuaries. However, approximately half of the island, or over 530,000 acres, has been scorched. Many of the wildlife only existing in Australia may be on the brink of extinction. While many animals have been affected or died by these intense fires, Australia has been relieved with heavy rain. Much like how extreme weather has effected Georgia and other Western states with freezing temperatures and rain,  Australia now has help from the heavy rain it has received to fight a few of the blazing fires that continue to sear throughout the land. 

Millions around the world have donated to help the people and animals in need. Celebrities such as Nicole Kidman, Selena Gomez and Margot Robbie have donated towards helping Australia’s animals as well as the people who have lost their homes or have been injured due to fires. 

Experts state that Australia will possibly never return to its original condition considering the massive destruction the fires have caused. Climate change has drastically changed many environmental status’ across the globe, affecting wildlife, people, and nature.