• Echidna

    Tachyglossidae Aculeatus

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    • Least Concern

    • Australia
    • Coastal / Highland regions of New Guinea

    • Length: 35cm → 52cm (14in → 20in)
    • Weight: 4kg → 7kg (9lbs → 15lbs)

    • Cool, dry forests
    • Can survive off very limited resources

    • Mating season: July / August
    • Babies are called “puggles” and born hairless/spikeless but with claws
    • Sexual Maturity: 5-12 years old
    • Average litter: 1
    • Mom lays egg in pouch for an ~ 10 day incubation period before it hatches
    • Hatched puggle attaches itself to a milk patch inside of the mothers pouch for 8-12 weeks
    • Puggle leaves pouch when spines begin to develop

    • Carnivore: Ants and Termites
    • Echidnas do not have teeth, rather a long, sensitive nose and a long, sticky tongue which captures the small insects, and proceeds to crush them against the “pads” in their mouth

    • Life span 15-40 years
    • Less than 20 in the United States
    • The beaks have electroreceptors similar to Sharks and Rays
    • Echidna’s are one of two Monotremes species in the world, meaning that they lay eggs (rather than birth live young) AND produce milk!
    • There are 4 sub-species of Echidna, also referred to as “Spiny anteaters”
    • They can control their spiky spines movement and direction as each is connected to muscle bundles at their base
    • Their spikes are not only used for protection, but also to help climb and anchor them to natural protective resources such as logs

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