As South Australia remains under threat from the most destructive bushfires to hit the state in decades, native animals are particularly at risk, but several videos have emerged showing acts of kindness towards them.
Shortly before the fires broke out, a YouTube user named Colin Phil Cook captured footage of a koala in distress on a “scorching hot” morning in the Adelaide Hills.
“I came across this little chap in a distressed state so I offered a helping hand from my water bottle and he drank without eagerly without hesitation,” Cook said.
The koala, he claims, was not getting enough moisture from the drying gum leaves in the area. “No idea if it survived, but when they get this thirsty there is a good chance that Kidney damage has set in already … but one can only hope.”
Several days later, as fires raged around the Adelaide Hills, SBS News spoke with a firefighter who had rescued a baby koala from the side of the road, as it attempted to climb a tree.
“It couldn’t climb a tree,” the firefighter explained. “It was fairly scared. It just couldn’t [get up]. It was trying.”
Photos shared today by the US embassy in Canberra show the incredible scale of the bushfires, with images captured by NASA:
— US Embassy Canberra (@USAembassyinOZ) January 5, 2015
As reported over the weekend, relief centers around South Australia have filled up with donations,and those looking to help out have been directed to the State Government’s bushfire relief site.