Koala Suffers Severe Burns After Habitat Destroyed in Salamander Bay Fire

A koala was severely burnt after a fire ripped through 16 hectares of koala habitat in the Mambo Wetlands Reserve, near Salamander Bay, New South Wales, on Monday, December 10.This video shows the wounded koala in the care of rescue organisation Port Stephens Koalas, which is located a short distance from the large expanse of wild koala habitat at Mambo Wetlands Reserve. Wildlife rescuers said the animal was in “excruciating pain” and had suffered “full thickness burns” to her rump, arms, face and all four paws.Port Stephens Koalas shared an update on Tuesday, December 11, saying they had rescued a further three koalas that fortunately had not suffered burns. A mother and joey were separated during the fires but the organisation managed to reunite the two and release them back into the wild after the fires had been extinguished. Wildlife carer Simone Aurino told the ABC the reserve was one of the essential habitats for koalas in the region. She said the flow-on effects of the fire had the potential to wipe out the entire koala population in the area.The blaze broke out near the Salamander Bay shopping centre on Monday evening and burnt more than 80 hectares of scrub in total, according to the ABC. It is suspected the fire was deliberately lit. Credit: Port Stephens Koalas via Storyful

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