Australia continues to suffer from horrific, widespread bushfires destroying millions of acres of land and devastating wildlife.
The fires have been especially bad for the continent’s koala population. Already considered vulnerable to extinction, this year’s fires have killed 25,000 koalas, despite the many efforts to save them.
And the koalas who survive will have to live in a very changed ecosystem where much of their habitat has been scorched. They will need all they help we can give them, and even the smallest acts of kindness can make a difference.
That was the case for one cyclist, who took the opportunity to do something kind during a chance encounter with a koala.
Anna Heusler, from Adelaide, Australia, was on a bike ride with her friends when they came across a koala in the road. It was in the midst of a severe heatwave, and they could tell the koala was in desperate need of water.
So Anna pulled out the water bottle from her bike and relieved the poor creature’s thirst.
While koalas aren’t known for being very approachable by humans, this one gladly accepted the help from his new friend.
“This Koala walked right up to me as I was descending and climbed up onto my bike while I gave him water,” Anna wrote on Instagram, describing the encounter as “the best thing that ever happened to me on a ride.”
“There were about a dozen cyclists around me watching this,” she added, “and several commented that it was genuinely the best thing they’ve witnessed.”
“What a truly wonderful experience.”
Anna was so impacted by the koala encounter that she decided to raise money for the “thirsty koalas,” starting a GoFundMe page on behalf of the Adelaide Koala Rescue.
Thank you to all the Australian citizens who have stepped up to help their wildlife in the wake of the bushfires! Even the smallest acts can make a real difference and save an animal’s life.
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