COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- As wildfires continue to burn in Australia, Coloradans are coming up with new ways to help the wildlife suffering in a charred eco-system.
Now, conservationists at the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo are looking to save the wildlife.
With snow on the ground and temperatures just above freezing, Colorado Springs feels like the furthest thing from the Australian outback.
But you wouldn't know it on zoo grounds, where curious wallabies wander and emus strut on stilt-like legs.
"Getting up-close and personal with wildlife helps you realize how amazing the diversity on the planet is," says Dr. Liza Dadone.
Dadone is the Vice President of Mission and Programs at the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo.
"Part of my training early on in my career, I got to spend some time helping with some zoo work in Southern Australia," she said.
Today, she's feeding almonds to nine red-necked wallabies and inviting zoo members to help the same species in Australia struggling to survive.
"So far, the fires have claimed at least 31 human lives and destroyed 27 million acres of land. More than a billion animals have been killed so far and that number will only continue to climb."
Dadone says that living in a fire-prone state, we can relate.
"Between Waldo Canyon and Black Forest [fires] it's so incredibly exciting to see our community rally around this issue," she said.
So how can the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo help Australia?
The zoo sends money to help fund conservation projects worldwide, buoyed by dues-paying zoo members.
Now, they're asking members to vote to use $20,000 in emergency funds to help their furry friends down under.
Zoo members have until Saturday, Feb. 1 to vote.