Australian Fires: A Danger To Species

Erin Harkins, Reporter

As seen in the news and on social media in the last few weeks, there has been a huge issue in Australia due to bushfires. These bushfires have threatened to wipe out smaller animal species. Many species are living on the brink of extinction, due to the fires killing the animals and burning large areas of their homes. 

There are about 600,000 to 700,000 species that are only found in Australia. These fires are raising concerns to many, including experts in biodiversity. Camels have been running around in neighborhoods in search of water due to the horrible heat. The camels are also raising concerns to the families in these neighborhoods, due to a concern for their children since they are running wild. Some subspecies, such as the glossy black cockatoos, only had about 300 to 370 remaining before the fires, which worries experts in biodiversity, as to if there are any surviving. Around 25,000 koalas have died from being consumed by flames. There is also a worry for koalas due to a lack of food. Many people are volunteering and helping along with veterinarians and firefighters to help save and take care of any hurt animals. Unfortunately, there is a huge number of animals that have died due to the fires. 

The combination of lower rainfall and higher temperatures are a huge problem with these fires and are both a result of climate change. These issues will only worsen until drastic action is undertaken. Australia is the hottest and driest continent, and the addition of issues due to climate change only makes it worse. 

Accurate numbers on the total of animal deaths are hard to find due to the fires still burning, but the estimated number is about 1 billion. The fires are expected to burn for months.