Australian bushfires help

Staehilomyces

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So far, I don't know much, but I have put a fair bit of thought into how inverts may have been affected.
The dark tiger E. rubripes, one of the biggest rubripes variants in Australia, have likely been decimated. They were restricted to an isolated pocket of rainforest which has been completely burned. My only hope is their ability to burrow.
As for other inverts, like @RezonantVoid said, Arbanitis species are probably doing worse than most mygalomorphs due to their open burrows. Most other mygalomorphs can plug theirs in one way or another.
Scorpions could also be suffering heavy losses - few species inhabiting the fire affected areas can burrow at all.
Araneomorph spiders are probably more vulnerable than mygalomorphs due to the fact they tend to live in more exposed positions. Would not be surprised at all if we've lost several species of those.

FB_IMG_1578609523985.jpg
Dark tiger rubripes - here's hoping they survived
 

The Snark

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Interesting data tracker info this AM. As of 5 minutes ago Kim Kardashian's walk in fridge is receiving 1000 to 1 more hits than the Aus bush fire updates. (That scale tops at 1000. Broader scales like Trump misinformation beats fact checks over 1,500,000 to 1)

Got to love the priorities in a world of sensationalism entertainment addiction.

@RezonantVoid Has any grass roots organizing got started for habitat rehab yet?
 
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Vulgarteacup

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I apologize for my language I just wish I could do even more to help and got caught up with emotion.
 

The Snark

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Since I'm pissing into a force five anyway...
>Over 90% of the fire fighters world wide are unpaid volunteers
>After the fire is out the real work begins: rehab. But public attention has moved on.
>Corporations get rewarded for wildland fires with salvage cuts being allowed where logging was strictly forbidden
...and the list goes on. I'm just one of thousands of retired FFs watching in total frustration, waiting for the inevitable limited public attention span to kick in. How nice, knitting rescue pouches and saving invertebrates while the un or underfunded habitat restoration will go on for years or even decades, if it even happens, and the chances are next to nil there will be additional funding for fire prevention and additional fire fighters.
 

Andrea82

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@RezonantVoid Has any grass roots organizing got started for habitat rehab yet?
Not yet. They can begin only after the fire season has ended, and some on Facebook said the worst is not over by a long shot.

Since I'm pissing into a force five anyway...
>Over 90% of the fire fighters world wide are unpaid volunteers
>After the fire is out the real work begins: rehab. But public attention has moved on.
>Corporations get rewarded for wildland fires with salvage cuts being allowed where logging was strictly forbidden
...and the list goes on. I'm just one of thousands of retired FFs watching in total frustration, waiting for the inevitable limited public attention span to kick in. How nice, knitting rescue pouches and saving invertebrates while the un or underfunded habitat restoration will go on for years or even decades, if it even happens, and the chances are next to nil there will be additional funding for fire prevention and additional fire fighters.
Well I'm sorry people try to do anything meaningful where they can. Get off your freaking high horse again Snark. We're actually doing something here, meaningless and pointless though it seems to your overeducated jaded mind. I'm not responding to your other self-pitying posts because I'm actually busy doing something, anything, I can to help.

If you want to complain about the world dealing with crisis start your own thread instead of just clogging this one with your whiny efforts to downplay what we're doing here.
 

Arthroverts

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Whoa whoa whoa, let's calm down y'all. We're not gonna get anywhere by blasting each other like this.

@The Snark makes perfectly valid points; it is true that in general people move on after the headlines stop coming, and that in all likeliness the habitat restoration will lag behind. Australia's lack of paid firefighters (to my knowledge) does seem to be hurting the efforts there as well.
At the same time, spearheading efforts like @Andrea82 is doing is the start of grassroots movements, which can and do do good, even if in proportion to everything else it seems miniscule. But who says this has to die after the fires are put out? We can totally, if someone were to rise up with passion and integrity to lead it, keep this alive and continue to try and help with habitat restoration once the worst is over. It only takes one person, just like it only takes one spark.

Please, we need both the pessimist and the optimist otherwise we end up with lopsided efforts, with one tending towards extreme skepticism and the other leading towards unrealistic expectations.

As one of my favorite authors once wrote, “Even the smallest person can change the course of the future.”

Thanks,

Arthroverts

P.S Australian enthusiasts, please forgive the cavalier attitude of myself, a foreigner with no actual experience on this issue. I want to help, just not sure how at this point. Let me know.
 

Andrea82

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Whoa whoa whoa, let's calm down y'all. We're not gonna get anywhere by blasting each other like this.

@The Snark makes perfectly valid points; it is true that in general people move on after the headlines stop coming, and that in all likeliness the habitat restoration will lag behind. Australia's lack of paid firefighters (to my knowledge) does seem to be hurting the efforts there as well.
At the same time, spearheading efforts like @Andrea82 is doing is the start of grassroots movements, which can and do do good, even if in proportion to everything else it seems miniscule. But who says this has to die after the fires are put out? We can totally, if someone were to rise up with passion and integrity to lead it, keep this alive and continue to try and help with habitat restoration once the worst is over. It only takes one person, just like it only takes one spark.

Please, we need both the pessimist and the optimist otherwise we end up with lopsided efforts, with one tending towards extreme skepticism and the other leading towards unrealistic expectations.

As one of my favorite authors once wrote, “Even the smallest person can change the course of the future.”

Thanks,

Arthroverts

P.S Australian enthusiasts, please forgive the cavalier attitude of myself, a foreigner with no actual experience on this issue. I want to help, just not sure how at this point. Let me know.
I know there is a broader vision needed for when things go bad in the future and what should be done about it, absolutely agree on that. It is the way it is put, like Snark always does, that prompted my previous message. Disparaging remarks followed by personal anecdotes which seems to becoming his usual style just don't sit well with me anymore because it doesn't help anything and only seems to serve the purpose of shouting of his soapbox in self glorifying manner. Of which I get tired, thoroughly tired. If he wants to talk solutions, that's fine. But he can do so without minimizing and being belligerent about what I and millions of others can do for Australia.
 

The Snark

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Disparaging remarks followed by personal anecdotes which seems to becoming his usual style just don't sit well with me anymore because it doesn't help anything and only seems to serve the purpose of shouting of his soapbox in self glorifying manner.
I'm open for suggestions on how to alter how I say things. I have a particular way of expressing myself I've acquired over the years, decades, but I'm not married to it. Educate me.

As for anecdotes, I state them as validation. I'm not simply griping but have come to a certain way of thinking through experience and trials and error. These are the instances that have caused me to reach these conclusions and have these opinions. I feel those I am communicating with deserve to hear the validations and I'm not just an armchair expert.
If you don't wish this courtesy, please say so. Your feelings and opinions are valid and of value.

FOR EXAMPLE: fire fighters put their lives on the line to stop a fire. Corporations come in and file salvage logging plans. These plans are almost always rubber stamped approved no Environmental Impact Report, EIR, required. What constitutes a salvage THP, Timber Harvest Plan in California, and nearly all the US is ONE TREE BURNED PER ACRE, the entire acre may be cut, plus logging roads pushed in that cause additional watershed destruction.
This leaves us wondering why we bothered to risk our lives to put out the fire in the first place. Isn't this a legit gripe and solid reason why I have an attitude?

And an apology. I do not discount the efforts being done rescuing the animals. It is very much appreciated. But that is after the fact immediate moment band aids slapped on after the damage is done. Where are the fire breaks? Never got financed. Where is the additional equipment that could have been used? People don't like their tax dollars just sitting around year after year unused. Where is the paid people power ready on the spot to jump on those fires? Volunteers trickle in, almost invariably after the fire has got going.
Prevention and readiness always gets the short shrift. Band aids are wonderful. Never having to use them in the first place is even better.
 
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Jess S

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@Andrea82 thank you for what you are trying to do.

I remember seeing a documentary years ago, where fire fighters were issued with what looked like a fire resistant foil blanket to throw over themselves if they were fighting a forest fire that suddenly turned back on them. Let's just take a moment to imagine being in that situation, where instead of running (no time) you have to lie down in the path of a huge fire and throw a foil sheet over yourself. So, firefighters I applaud you and I hope you all stay safe in your duties. Thank you so much for literally putting yourself in the line if fire.
 

The Snark

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Let's just take a moment to imagine being in that situation, where instead of running (no time)
Care to try making a 500 yard dash wearing 15-20 lbs of turnout gear? (Grass fires can travel 35-40 mph, but you run towards them)
 
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Andrea82

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I'm open for suggestions on how to alter how I say things. I have a particular way of expressing myself I've acquired over the years, decades, but I'm not married to it. Educate me.

As for anecdotes, I state them as validation. I'm not simply griping but have come to a certain way of thinking through experience and trials and error. These are the instances that have caused me to reach these conclusions and have these opinions. I feel those I am communicating with deserve to hear the validations and I'm not just an armchair expert.
If you don't wish this courtesy, please say so. Your feelings and opinions are valid and of value.

FOR EXAMPLE: fire fighters put their lives on the line to stop a fire. Corporations come in and file salvage logging plans. These plans are almost always rubber stamped approved no Environmental Impact Report, EIR, required. What constitutes a salvage THP, Timber Harvest Plan in California, and nearly all the US is ONE TREE BURNED PER ACRE, the entire acre may be cut, plus logging roads pushed in that cause additional watershed destruction.
This leaves us wondering why we bothered to risk our lives to put out the fire in the first place. Isn't this a legit gripe and solid reason why I have an attitude?

And an apology. I do not discount the efforts being done rescuing the animals. It is very much appreciated. But that is after the fact immediate moment band aids slapped on after the damage is done. Where are the fire breaks? Never got financed. Where is the additional equipment that could have been used? People don't like their tax dollars just sitting around year after year unused. Where is the paid people power ready on the spot to jump on those fires? Volunteers trickle in, almost invariably after the fire has got going.
Prevention and readiness always gets the short shrift. Band aids are wonderful. Never having to use them in the first place is even better.
I'm glad for your response and clearing things up. I think we both are frustrated with the system but from different perspectives. I understand that the circumstances leading up to these fires should be addressed, I've read about that as well, and I agree with you there. But that is not something I can change. Or we can change. So that added to my frustration, and combined with the disparaging remark about the people who are knitting/crocheting/sewing their hands bruised to help with the little ones, struck a very wrong nerve.
While your background definitely gives you the right to post anecdotes that for you are relevant to the topic, I disagree with the placement of those anecdotes and the message that what we're doing is useless because some magnate is going to mess it all up again in this topic, since my intention was to create a practical thread for people with ideas to make things better now, this instant. However, I recognize I'm not a moderator of this thread or even have the authority to decide what is posted in it, so there's that. I could have just ignored your posts, like I did with the first few, but when you posted you felt like you were pissing in the wind and the line about the knitting, I just had enough, which is why I responded the way I did.
When practical meets theoretical, issues rise, and I guess that's what happened. If have little patience for the larger scale of things when I'm working hard to get some stuff ready to ship and in the meantime try to get more people aboard. For me, the larger scale comes into view after the fires are out, all the orphans, mammal, marsupial, reptile or invert, are saved/treated and the time for rebuilding starts.
Which is al long way off, I just read that conditions continue to get worse, and that 3 fires have merged into one hell of a blaze in the Snowy mountains.

For the people wanting to help;
I've been in contact with a rescue organization for reptiles to ask what they need, and they replied that they could use more bandages and hooped snake bags.
I have googled but I can't seem to find a pattern to sew a hoop bag, only for regular bags. Does anyone know anything about those?
There are organizations set up through the US and Canada, please visit them on Facebook for what is needed and where to bring it.
 
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The Snark

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Instead of the sensationalism entertainment go here: https://www.rfs.nsw.gov.au/fire-information/major-fire-updates
And here: https://www.rfs.nsw.gov.au/fire-information/fires-near-me

@Andrea82 Different points of view. All experienced wild land FFs know. If fire suppression services had a small fraction of the money being spent exploiting and destroying the environment we wouldn't have disasters like this.
... "Imagine if we only had 100 quick attacks. We would be on top of this. The money spent by corporations just on lobbying for special favors for a year would do it."

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/atlantic-coast-pipeline-dominion-duke_b_5d8b9843e4b08d7f82bc9f07

http://weisfiresafety.com/fire-trucks/weis-quick-attack
It's very simple. If you can jump on a spot fire before it has a chance to get going, starts feeding itself, you have a good chance to control it. Right now in Aus nearly all the fires got going long before services could get on them. What you don't want is fires getting so large they create their own weather pattern. Then all you can do is hit the surrounding spot fires and hope for the weather to change.
Fire fighting after the fact really sucks. A protracted study in frustration. And the results are things like making pouches for the surviving animals.
 
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Andrea82

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Instead of the sensationalism entertainment go here: https://www.rfs.nsw.gov.au/fire-information/major-fire-updates
And here: https://www.rfs.nsw.gov.au/fire-information/fires-near-me

@Andrea82 Different points of view. All experienced wild land FFs know. If fire suppression services had a small fraction of the money being spent exploiting and destroying the environment we wouldn't have disasters like this.
... "Imagine if we only had 100 quick attacks. We would be on top of this. The money spent by corporations just on lobbying for special favors for a year would do it."

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/atlantic-coast-pipeline-dominion-duke_b_5d8b9843e4b08d7f82bc9f07

http://weisfiresafety.com/fire-trucks/weis-quick-attack
Where did I post sensationalism news? Three fires merging into one is not sensationalism, it's real:
https://www.news.com.au/technology/environment/bushfire-live-blog-snowy-mountain-fires-merge-to-create-megablaze/live-coverage/7857b47b423ebd6837a27a9c27717b0e
 

The Snark

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Where did I post sensationalism news? Three fires merging into one is not sensationalism, it's real:
You didn't. Please don't take my words personally.

@Andrea82 Again, apologies. None of what I am typing is directed at any individual. And individual efforts count for so much. Thanks to the entirely volunteer services of various women's auxiliaries fire suppression in many locations in the US had been real instead of pie in the sky - but one example. Last I heard they have bought over 500 fire trucks, probably well over 1000, and financed entire departments with turnouts.
I mention their efforts in particular in that very often they, with their bake sales and bingo sessions, have spent more money on public safety services than the municipality governments they reside in. How's that for ridiculous?

Danger! Anecdote:
On more occasions than I can count, as paid professional FF, I have been on fires where we have teamed up with entirely volunteer local fire departments working entirely with donated equipment. They get right in there beside us and put it down to the ground. I'm proud, even honored, to have worked with them. So if anyone is looking for some way to help, start with your local fire department, or in the present situation, contact the head office as the NSW rural FD.
Please keep in mind, prevention and readiness before aftermath clean up and salvage is always the best move.
 
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BushYeti

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From what has been recorded we have lost millions or animals already & they have suggested we have already had several species fronw hat they say gone extinct as wiped out there habitat not many people care for invertebrates & think its a joke i have been working with a few people supplying specific inverts for breeding got a few people breeding stick insects, mantids etc i know of. I had a few species breed this season once fires are taken care of i will be releasing & still aquiring species now to breed to help populations but damage has been done already
 

Dennis Nedry

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So far, I don't know much, but I have put a fair bit of thought into how inverts may have been affected.
The dark tiger E. rubripes, one of the biggest rubripes variants in Australia, have likely been decimated. They were restricted to an isolated pocket of rainforest which has been completely burned. My only hope is their ability to burrow.
As for other inverts, like @RezonantVoid said, Arbanitis species are probably doing worse than most mygalomorphs due to their open burrows. Most other mygalomorphs can plug theirs in one way or another.
Scorpions could also be suffering heavy losses - few species inhabiting the fire affected areas can burrow at all.
Araneomorph spiders are probably more vulnerable than mygalomorphs due to the fact they tend to live in more exposed positions. Would not be surprised at all if we've lost several species of those.

View attachment 330509
Dark tiger rubripes - here's hoping they survived
Would be nice if somebody can breed and release some individuals once the area has recovered if they have been wiped out. Hopefully any sheltering deep enough or under boulders big enough survived
 

Crone Returns

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Let's repeat that, The only solution that I see is ensuring that bushland rehabilitation is appropriately funded.
I've seen this scenario more times than I care to count. After the drama some funds get shoved around, are given a short shrift, out of sight - out of mind takes over, politicians fracture concerted efforts usually concentrating on activities that help to get themselves re-elected and the best intentions goes the way of the Dodo.
-After a fire I was on, scientists and environmental organizations determined 50 million trees needed to be replanted, 6 million had funds allocated, less than 3 million were purchased or sprouted and around 1.5 million actually went in the ground.
-West coast, US. 66 spawning rivers and streams destroyed due to logging. Public outrage. Corporations wanted to exploit resources and spread their propaganda: habitat rehabilitation is a small group of radical tree huggers. So far 16 have been recovered.
-2011, floods put about 1/4 of Bangkok under water. The King advised, "Plant deciduous forests." So far there are four small seedling nurseries, woefully underfunded. Most replanting is done voluntarily by college students.

And the present fire. The BS has started already:
https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2020/jan/08/twitter-bots-trolls-australian-bushfires-social-media-disinformation-campaign-false-claims
Yeah. Been reading about it, too. Completely infuriating.
 

Brachyfan

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This whole situation is heartbreaking! But how Aussies are with their wildlife I think there would be some good rehabilitation and re releasing.
 

The Snark

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But how Aussies are with their wildlife I think there would be some good rehabilitation and re releasing.
Certainly better than the US. Especially under the present dominion: Koalaburger with marsupial sauce only $249.95 while supply lasts!
 

Jess S

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Care to try making a 500 yard dash wearing 15-20 lbs of turnout gear? (Grass fires can travel 35-40 mph, but you run towards them)
I doubt I'd be able to even carry that weight in kit. It just astounds me how firefighters have to work and they are true heroes to me. Wearing and carrying PPE that will exhaust you and make you sweat bucket loads, then going into extreme heat, while trying to stay alive and save others. And all the other things they do, pulling people out of collapsed buildings, car accidents, the list goes on. I don't know how they do it. I can't thank you and your colleagues all over the world, enough. Truly amazing and heroic every single one of you.
 
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