"Before the summer bushfires destroyed vast expanses of habitat,
Australia was already in the midst of a biodiversity crisis. Now, some
threatened species have been reduced to a handful of individuals – and
extinctions are a real possibility.
The Kangaroo Island dunnart, a small marsupial, was listed as critically
endangered before the bushfires. Then the inferno destroyed 95% of its
Prospects for the Banksia Montana mealybug are similarly grim. This
flightless insect lives only on one species of critically endangered
plant, at a high altitude national park in Western Australia. The fires
destroyed 100% of the plant’s habitat.
And fewer than 100 western ground parrots remained in the wild before
last summer, on Western Australia’s south coast. Last summer’s fires
destroyed 40% of its habitat.
Fish, crayfish and some frogs are also struggling. After the fires,
heavy rain washed ash, fire retardants and dirt into waterways. This can
clog and damage gills, and reduces the water’s oxygen levels. Some
animals are thought to have suffocated.
Here, dozens of experts tell the stories of the 119 species most in need
of help after our Black Summer."
*** Xanni ***
Chief Scientist, Xanadu
Partner, Glass Wings
Manager, Serious Cybernetics