A new video by TIME shows a koala injured in the bushfires that have ravaged Australia in recent months receiving treatment at a local rescue hospital. Though it is uncertain when he can return to the wild.
Footage captured by environmental photographer and filmmaker Michaela Skovranova from the Port Macquarie Koala Hospital in December 2019 depicts one of several koalas that were brought in for care as bushfires have raged in Australia since September. Named Thrumster Mal, the injured koala was discovered by a local resident and required surgery to recover from burns incurred on his face and arms that made it difficult for him to climb around.
Bushfires in Australia have caused the deaths of at least 31 people, burned nearly 26 million acres and destroyed more than 2,600 homes. An estimated 1 billion animals are feared to have died in the fires, including as many as 25,000 koalas.
As the video shows, Thrumster Mal is expected to recover from his treatment at the Port Macquarie Koala Hospital, which is operated mostly by volunteers and admits between 200 and 250 koalas each year, according to its website. Thrumster Mal’s next steps remain unclear. Though he’d ideally return to the wild, the bushfires have damaged his ecosystem and destroyed the trees that he’d use for food.
Write to Mahita Gajanan at mahita.gajanan@time.com.