As fires continue to rip through Australia, some devastating numbers are emerging: At least 24 people killed. More than 15.6 million acres torched. Over 1,400 homes destroyed. And, according to one biodiversity expert’s count, an estimated 1 billion animals killed.
That last number is staggeringly huge, and has begun to make the rounds on social media. You might be wondering: How are so many animals dying? And how do we know the number of animals killed?
The bushfires, exacerbated by climate change, have since September swept through vast swathes of Australia — we’re talking about an area bigger than Vermont and New Hampshire combined — affecting a mix of rural and suburban areas.
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