Photos: Fires threaten parts of Australia

Updated 1848 GMT (0248 HKT) January 15, 2013
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The Wambelong Fire burns near the Siding Spring Observatory near Coonabarabran, Australia, on Monday, January 14. REUTERS /HANDOUT /LANDOV
The Redbank North Fire burns close to the Newell Highway near Coonabarabran on Monday. REUTERS /HANDOUT /LANDOV
A water-bombing helicopter returns from a fire area to the town of Yass, in the southern part of New South Wales state, on Friday, January 11. GREG WOOD/AFP/Getty Images
A scrub fire burns up a hillside south of Bookham near Yass on Friday. GREG WOOD/AFP/Getty Images
Fire leaves a tree and paddock blackened near Bookham on Thursday, January 10. GREG WOOD/AFP/Getty Images
Firefighters attack a fire from the ground on Wednesday, January 9, in Bungendore, Australia. A "catastrophic warning" was lifted, but the fire risk was still considered "severe" in the northeastern part of New South Wales. The threat has eased as temperatures have fallen in the southern Australian state, but authorities warn the danger isn't over yet. Brendon Thorne/Getty Images
Burned sheep lie in a paddock near Bookham in New South Wales on Wednesday. An estimated 10,000 sheep have died in the New South Wales bushfires. LUKAS COCH/EPA /LANDOV
A firefighter douses trees from the Deans Gap fire near Nowra on New South Wales' southern coast on January 9. GREG WOOD/AFP/Getty Images
Trees smolder near Nowra on January 9. GREG WOOD/AFP/Getty Images
A chopper carries out water-bombing operations on a fire at Sandhills in Bungendore on January 9. Brendon Thorne/Getty Images
Smoke rises from a wildfire in Nimmitabel, a town in New South Wales, on Tuesday, January 8. Pamela Martin/Getty Images
A firefighter battles the flames of the Dean's Gully fire at a property near the town of Wandandian in New South Wales, on January 8. DEAN LEWINS/EPA/LANDOV
A fire danger rating sign set to catastrophic stands near fire trucks as smoke billows into the sky on the outskirts of Wandandian on January 8. On Tuesday afternoon, more than 130 fires were burning throughout NSW, according to the NSW Rural Fire Service. DEAN LEWINS/EPA/LANDOV
Firefighters continue to hose around a tree that survived a fire in Oura in New South Wales on Tuesday. LUKAS COCH/EPA/LANDOV
Burned out cars lie abandoned at the jetty on the Tasman Peninsula in Boomer Bay, Tasmania, on Tuesday. ROB BLAKERSEPA/LANDOV
Smoke is seen billowing over the closed Hume Highway near Tarcutta in New South Wales on Tuesday. LUKAS COCH/epa/LANDOV
A kangaroo hops through a field burned by recent fires in Sunbury north of Melbourne on January 8. JULIAN SMITH/epa/LANDOV
Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard inspects the destroyed remains of the Dunalley school in southeast Tasmania, Australia, on Monday, January 7. ROB BLAKERS/EPA/LANDOV
Buildings lie in ruins on Saturday, January 5, from bush fires that hit Dunalley, a town on the Australian island state of Tasmania. Chris Kidd/AFP/Getty Images
Sgt. Matthew Drumm, a police rescue helicopter crewman, surveys devastation in Dunalley after bush fires swept through this part of Tasmania. Chris Kidd/AFP/Getty Images