Saturday, August 15, 2020

Recovering from the Australian Bushfires

18.6 million hectares of land were destroyed in the Australian fires which raged from last Fall into the beginning of this year. It will take many, many years for nature to fully recover from the fires.

The Conversation has been examining the animal and plant species whose habitats have been destroyed and looking at some of the conservation efforts which have been started to help Australia's flora and fauna recover. Flora, Fauna, Fire is a scrollytelling account of the devastation caused by the fires, an account which also draws attention to the 119 species which scientists say now face the possibility of extinction without urgent human intervention.

Flora, Fauna, Fire includes maps showing the extent of the habitats destroyed in the fires. It also includes satellite analysis showing where the bush is growing back and where it is struggling to recover. Australia is used to natural wildfires. However because of climate change fires are becoming much more frequent and the worry is that wildlife and landscapes will not have time to recover between fires.

You can learn more about each of the 119 species in Australia which are in need of urgent intervention on The Conversation's The 119. This database includes pictures and details on all 119 species of animals and birds and how much of each species' habitat was burned. If you click on any of the 119 species you can learn more about the selected species' conservation status and the immediate actions which are needed to save the species. You can also view an interactive map of the species natural habitat in Australia and where that habitat was destroyed in the fires.

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