Heartbreaking photos show animals impacted by Australia's bushfires

Jill Gralow / ReutersWildlife Information, Rescue and Education Services (WIRES) volunteer and carer Tracy Dodd holds a kangaroo with burnt feet pads after being rescued from bushfires in Australia’s Blue Mountains area, December 30, 2019.

The bushfires raging in Australia have taken a massive toll on animals – more than a billion of them are thought to have died so far, in what is only the beginning of summer in the Southern Hemisphere.

Fires have burned an estimated 25.5 million acres since September, according to Reuters. The fires have claimed dozens of lives, and destroyed thousands of homes. The fires are so massive, smoke from them has been turning the sky in New Zealand orange – which is about 1,200 miles away. By comparison, the massive Amazon Rainforest fires in 2019 burned an estimated 17.5 million acres.

Size of australia fires compared to USShayanne Gal/Insider

Celebrities and other well-known figures throughout the world have been calling on the public to join them in helping Australians, while Celeste Barber’s Facebook bushfire fundraiser is officially the largest in the platform’s history, raising over $US28.5 million in just four days.

The fires have had a heartbreaking impact on pets and wild animals too – tens of thousands of koalas are feared dead on Kangaroo Island alone, and last week, the family of late wildlife conservationist Steve Irwin announced that their animal hospital in Queensland had treated more than 90,000 animal patients.


Wildlife Information, Rescue and Education Services (WIRES) volunteer and carer Tracy Burgess holds a severely burnt brushtail possum rescued from fires near Australia’s Blue Mountains on December 29.

Jill Gralow / ReutersA brushtail possum rescued from fires near Australia’s Blue Mountains.

WIRES volunteer and carer Tracy Dodd holds a kangaroo with burnt feet pads after being rescued from bushfires in the Blue Mountains on December 30.

Jill Gralow / ReutersA kangaroo with burnt feet pads rescued from bushfires in the Blue Mountains.

A dog visits the burnt-out property of its owner’s family member in Kia, Australia, on January 8.

Tracey Nearmy / ReutersA dog in Kia following bushfires.

A weary kangaroo shelters on a patch of green grass surrounded by burnt bushland along the Princes Highway near Milton on January 5.

Tracey Nearmy / ReutersA kangaroo near in Milton.

In this image made from video taken on December 22, and provided by Oakbank Balhannah CFS, a koala drinks water from a bottle given by a firefighter in Cudlee Creek, South Australia.

Oakbank Balhannah CFS via APA koala drinking from a water bottle given by a firefighter in Cudlee Creek.

A dehydrated and injured Koala receives treatment at the Port Macquarie Koala Hospital in Port Macquarie on November 2.

SAEED KHAN/AFP via Getty ImagesA dehydrated koala being cared for in Port Macquarie.

A pet cat sits quietly in its animal carrier at the evacuation centre in the Bomaderry Bowls Club in Bomaderry on January 5.

Tracey Nearmy / ReutersA pet cat at the evacuation centre in the Bomaderry Bowls Club.

Bec Winter stands next to her son, Riley, while hugging her horse Charmer, who she rode to safety through bushfires on New Year’s Eve in Moruya.

Jill Gralow / ReutersBec Winter, son Riley (right) and horse Charmer.

Adelaide wildlife rescuer Simon Adamczyk is seen with a koala rescued at a burning forest near Cape Borda on Kangaroo Island.


Animals are seen in Cobargo, as bushfires continue in New South Wales, Australia on January 5.

Tracey Nearmy / ReutersBushfires near Cobargo in New South Wales.

Giraffes at the Mogo Zoo in Mogo on January 8.

Alkis Konstantinidis / ReutersGiraffes at the Mogo Zoo.

An injured koala receives treatment at the Port Macquarie Koala Hospital after its rescue from a bushfire on November 19.

Tao Shelan/China News Service/VCG via Getty ImagesAn injured koala at Port Macquarie Koala Hospital.

WIRES volunteer and carer Tracy Dodd holds a kangaroo with burnt feet pads after it was rescued from bushfires in the Blue Mountains on December 30.

Jill Gralow / ReutersA kangaroo with burnt feet pads rescued from bushfires in the Blue Mountains.

A cat sits in a makeshift joey pouch crafted for animals affected by Australia’s bushfires, seen in this January 6 image obtained via social media, in Tauranga, New Zealand.


Chickens mill around a burnt-out property in Kiah on January 8.

Tracey Nearmy / ReutersChickens in Kiah, New South Wales.

A Red Heeler dog lies on the ground at the Cobargo evacuation centre in Cobargo on January 6.

Tracey Nearmy / ReutersA Red Heeler dog in Cobargo.

Local aboriginal man Anthony Thomas is seen at his uncle’s property, destroyed by bushfires, in Kiah on January 8.

Tracey Nearmy / ReutersAnthony Thomas in Kiah.

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