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If you have just joined us we are on an Australian animal safari for this series. All these photos were taken at Healesville Sanctuary in Victoria, Australia. If you would like to return to the beginning of the series click here
This photo is of an Echidna. The Echidna is a Monotreme like the Platypus and another of Australia's curious animals. A Monotreme is a warm blooded marsupial, that suckles its young, but it also lays eggs.
The Echidna, known locally as the Spiny Anteater, is covered in spines to defend itself from predators.
The Echidna minds its own business. It spends its day digging in the ground with its long sharp claws, searching for meals of ants, worms and insects sweeping them up with its sticky tongue. If frightened, an Echidna will dig into the ground or curl itself into a ball so the spines protect its body.
The female echidna lays one egg in and keeps it in her pouch. When the egg hatches the young (called a puggle) are born blind and hairless just like the wallabies, kangaroos and koalas. They then lick secreted milk in the mother's pouch until the spines develop and it then leaves the pouch to stay in a burrow until mature.
If you would like to understand more about this animal, you might enjoy this film. CLICK HERE
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