The Australian bushfires have taken the lives of more than one billion animals. At least 350 koalas have been killed and many left injured or starving as the fires destroyed their food and habitat.
But since the country’s worst bushfires last summer, a special dog named Bear has saved more than 100 injured or sick koalas.
The five-year-old Border Collie-koolie cross has been working hard since last November to detect surviving koalas in Queensland and New South Wales.
The hero canine was rescued by the University of the Sunshine Coast (USC) after being abandoned because of his OCD behaviour that meant he couldn't play properly. He became part of the USC's Detection Dogs for Conservation team who rescue koalas living in bushfire-ravaged areas.
Sniffing out koalas
Bear is the only pup in the entire world that is able to sniff out koalas from the scents of their fur and faeces.
Despite the harrowing conditions, Bear's incredible rescue abilities have brought hope to wildlife campaigners who are now calling for koalas to be classified as endangered and given the appropriate protections.
Well done Bear!