Koala seen being rescued from Australian brush fire dies


CANBERRA, Australia (WCMH/AP) — The koala that was rescued by a woman who used her shirt to scoop up the injured animal from an Australia brush fire, has died.  

The viral video showed the 14-year-old koala, named Lewis, crawling along through the brush fire, when rescuer Toni Doherty is seen using her shirt to grab the animal before she provides it water.  

Lewis was taken to a nearby koala hospital, but CNN is reporting his injuries were too severe and the animal has died.  

Conservationists fear hundreds of koalas have perished in wildfires that have razed prime habitat on Australia’s east coast. 

Port Macquarie Koala Hospital President Sue Ashton said she hoped wildlife officials would be allowed to begin their search of the fire zone for survivors on Thursday. The fire was started by a lightning strike on Friday in a forest in New South Wales state, 190 miles north of Sydney, and has since burnt 4,900 acres. 

Two-thirds of that area was koala habitat, Ashton said. 

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