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Australia, New Zealand, Pacific Islands

Australia's unique wildlife among victims of 'angry summer'

Extreme temperatures exact horrific death toll among wild animals

SYDNEY -- Record-breaking summer heat waves in recent months have left Australians sweating and uncomfortable and killed thousands of animals, graphically illustrating the dangers posed to the world's driest inhabited continent by climate change.

With temperatures topping 42C along the country's eastern seaboard, thousands of indigenous flying foxes in months have been dropping out of their trees, dead or severely distressed. In Queensland, Loggerhead turtle hatchlings have been cooked in their shells while trying to reach the ocean across ferociously hot sand.

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