Second town on Kangaroo Island evacuated

"That's a message for people around the country - put your hand up if you need help".

The Rural Fire Service in New South Wales state has told fire-weary community meetings south of Sydney in the coastal towns of Nowra, Narooma and Batemans Bay that northwesterly winds were likely to once again drive blazes toward the coast.

Meanwhile an emergency warning is in place for a fast-moving and uncontrolled bushfire near the Eyre Highway in Western Australia's southeast.

NASA's Terra satellite took a photo of the island on December 16, 2019 (bottom) and another (top) on January 7, 2020.

The unprecedented fire crisis in southeast Australia that has claimed at least 26 lives since September, destroyed more than 2,000 homes and scorched an area twice the size of the US state of Maryland has focused many Australians on how the nation adapts to climate change. Satellite pictures show almost a third of Kangaroo Island - a former haven for wildlife - scorched by the bushfires.

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Almaty heathcare authorities initially put the death toll from the crash at 15 or more but later revised the figure down to 12. Production on the Fokker 100 ceased in 1997, after the plane's Dutch manufacturer went into bankruptcy a year earlier.

NASA's Terra satellite captured a view of Kangaroo Island on Tuesday showing a third of the landmass covered by burn scars or active fires.

"Caring for all these animals is quite wonderful", said Sam Mitchell, co-owner of the Kangaroo Island Wildlife Park. However, the fires have damaged a huge portion of the island, as seen in dramatic before and after images released by NASA.

The agency said the bushfires began as lightning strikes within Flinders Chase National Park. The loss of vegetation and wildlife is a disturbing outcome of the wildfires throughout the country.

Experts working on the island say the fires have killed thousands of koalas and kangaroos, and also have raised questions about whether any members of a mouse-like marsupial species that carries its young in a pouch have survived.

Flames have been burning across Australia for months, razing houses and destroying entire cities.

  • Douglas Reid