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Flickr Friday: Spiny but cute

Friently echidna

This delightful study of a Tasmanian echidna comes from the camera of a Flickr poster with the moniker Sir Francis Canker Jones.

We found it interspersed between shots of his wedding, breaching whales in Sydney Harbour, and sheep in New Zealand!

thisTasmania contributing editor Fred Baker writes:

Australias’ short beaked Echidna — or spiny anteater — feeds on ants and termites, pulling a nest apart with strong clawed forearms, then inserting its long snout and sticky tongue.

Echidnas are found all over Australia and are the only known relative of the Platypus. In cold areas they may hibernate in winter.

A frightened Echidna will dig rapidly down into soft ground, leaving only the tips of its spines visible.

The single young one hatches from an egg and is carried in the mother’s pouch until its spines begin to grow.

After that the mother leaves it in a den and visits every few days to feed it milk. A baby Echidna is called a Puggle.

Editor’s note: If you would like to be featured here, simply upload your photographs to Flickr [signing up is free] and we’ll find them. We check regularly for new entries tagged with ‘Tasmania’ or, better still, ‘thisTasmania’.


Paul Schaffer 07.20.07 at 7:57 am

Lovely creature, great shot. Thanks for the explanation

Stefanie 10.13.08 at 12:24 pm

Wow that was pretty interesting! I agree with Paul. I’ve never seen anything like that little creature, I want to find out more about it!

Alexis 08.31.10 at 8:11 am


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