A brief bio on the amazing Echidna

One of the oldest mammals on earth, the Echidna (E-KID-NA), are also one of the three species of mammal that lay eggs.

Differing greatly from many of the later-formed sexual relationships of most mammals (for example female quolls gain much weight and fat tissue around their necks, so that the males may bite their necks and hold them in place); the female echidna is the dominant partner in this relationship.

She can and will have as many as twenty sexual partners at one time. She will dig a sort of mound, tip herself over into placement and then will release a pheromone to let her males know she is ready. When she is finished she will release another pheromone (basically a giant toot) to let the male know to bugger off.

Once the echidna has laid her egg, she will roll over to place it on her stomach in a homemade pouch made of skin and muscle, so she can still wobble around and find food.

The echidna has no teats. When the baby wants milk it will scratch anywhere along the mother’s stomach and out will come the milk through her skin (the milk is either yellow or pink).

Once the baby becomes too big to carry, the mother will dig a big hole and bury their kid in it. The young will live here for 6 months, with the mother visiting it every 5-6 days to feed it for 2 hours, then bury it again. Once the mother abandons it, the baby will get hungry and dig itself out of its hole to go find food.

Do you know what they look like?

They are like giant hedgehogs with spikes all over their bodies. These spikes are made of keratin and cannot really hurt anything. The echidnas main line of defence is to bury itself at the sign of any threat. They have large and thick front paws that can sense vibrations through the ground. They have some extremely long toenails on their back feet to assist in the digging. Their ears look like giant holes in the sides of their heads. They have two eyes they can see with. And their nose/ mouth is a long skinny beak with a long, worm-like pink tongue that grows as long as a third of its body length.

They are weird, spikey little creatures and they can live up to 50 years old!

~ Taylor


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Author Taylor Lovely Posted