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‘They were incinerated – it’s like a cremation’: Hundreds of helpless koalas wiped out in bush fire

‘They were incinerated – it’s like a cremation’: Hundreds of helpless koalas are wiped out in a bushfire

  • Experts believe 350 koalas have died in extreme bush fires near Port Macquarie  
  • The Lake Innes Nature Reserve was home to 600 koalas before fire conditions
  • ‘It’s like a cremation,’ said Koala Conservation Australia President Sue Ashton  

Hundreds of koalas are feared dead on the New South Wales mid north coast after out of control bush fires burned through their habitat.

The Lake Innes Nature Reserve south of Port Macquarie was home to 600 koalas before extreme fire conditions swept through the region in the last two weeks.

It has been estimated that 350 koalas are dead as a result of the inferno, with fears that number could grow as fire fighters are still battling fires in the area.

The area was home to a unique colony of genetically diverse koalas, with wildlife rescuers worried for their well being in the dangerous conditions.

It has been estimated that 350 koalas are dead as a result of bush fires in the Lake Innes Nature Reserve south of Port Macquarie. There have been 16 koalas rescued, including Peter (pictured), who has burns to his hands and feet and singeing of 90% of his body.

Koala Conservation Australia President Sue Ashton told the Sydney Morning Herald she believed most of the animals met a tragic demise in the blaze.

‘We think most of the animals were incinerated,’ Ms Ashton said. ‘It’s like a cremation. They have been burnt to ashes in the trees.’

There have been 16 koalas rescued from their fire ravaged habitat and taken to Port Macquarie’s Koala Hospital, where carers are bandaging them and feeding them eucalyptus leaves and formula.

The koala population in the area has been called ‘vulnerable’ after the extreme conditions, with Ms Ashton appealing for people to catch injured koalas and bring them to the hospital to be used in a breeding program.

Fire conditions are expected to worsen into this week, with extremely hot temperatures and strong winds forecast for the region on Tuesday.

At least 100 homes have been destroyed by bush fires in New South Wales, with two people confirmed dead. 

The koala population in the area has been called 'vulnerable' after the extreme conditions, with Koala Conservation Australia President Sue Ashton appealing for people to catch injured koalas such as Paul (pictured) and bring them to Port Macquarie's Koala Hospital to be used in a breeding program.

The koala population in the area has been called ‘vulnerable’ after the extreme conditions, with Koala Conservation Australia President Sue Ashton appealing for people to catch injured koalas such as Paul (pictured) and bring them to Port Macquarie’s Koala Hospital to be used in a breeding program.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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