Back when I was a volunteer firefighter, I happened to be crewed with a local firefighting legend and veteran of the devastating Ash Wednesday fires of 1983.

Naturally, he had many pearls of wisdom to dispense. For instance, when you pull up to a fire, he said, stop and have a cup of tea. Instead of charging in, take stock. Observe the smoke. Figure out what’s happening and plan accordingly. It’s a strategy which applies in many aspects of life.

The other that I particularly remember is his laconic observation that “the bush loves a burn”.

He’d gesture at the lush forest around us. This stuff was all burnt right out, in Ash Wednesday. Look at it now. I remember for myself how quickly fresh growth started appearing after the Ash Wednesday conflagration. Now, in some parts of Australia at least, the same process of destruction and regrowth is taking place.

Beautiful photographs of the bush regrowing on the NSW Central Coast a month after fires devastated the region have been picked up as a symbol of hope online.

Local photographer Murray Lowe snapped the shots in the Kulnara area on Monday and posted them on Facebook, where they have been shared more 37,000 times in less than 48 hours.

New Growth in Bushfire Areas. The BFD. All images: Murray Lowe.

Bear in mind that this is while the country is still in the grip of drought.

“Ventured out into the fire grounds today to capture some images of how the Aussie bush responds to fire, and the way it regenerates itself and comes back to life,” Mr Lowe wrote in his post.

“Even without any rain, life bursts through the burnt bark from the heart of the trees and the life cycle begins again.”

Mr Lowe urged as many people as possible to share the photos.

“It’s so heartening to see the bush coming back to life again,” he wrote…Port Macquarie Koala Hospital, which has been faced with the desperate task of saving our decimated koala population, also recently shared an image showing regrowth on the “trunks of koala food” in the Bril Bril state forest.

Murray Lowe’s photography can be viewed here. Proceeds from the sales of prints will be donated to bushfire victims.

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