Hey, don't you wish you could do humongous
hops like a kangaroo? You could, if you had powerful back legs and
long back feet. But they can't walk backwards, and they don't have
thumbs: so you're even, mate! They DO have a long fourth toe with
a wicked claw. This toe is the secret behind those huge hops - it
helps push them forward! Their tail ( apart from making yummy kangaroo
tail soup) helps them balance when hopping fast. If you like hamburgers
and fried chicken, don't go dine with a kangaroo - strictly salad
I'm afraid. Babies grow big in Mama's"marsupial"pouch. Kangaroo
mamas must LOVE babies, because adult females are almost always pregnant.
After that first Joey starts sucking on the teats in her pouch, Mama
K's milk just keeps on flowing - an on-tap milk bar until she dies.
Kangaroos are silent types, but even they offer a few "love grunts"when
romance is in the air. People yell and scream when they're scared,
right? But kangaroos just lift that big back foot, and thump the ground
to warn of danger. Now, here's something to
make you hop up and down! Almost 280 companies worldwide want
to use a picture of the kangaroo as their trademark.
for more kangaroo clues. Plus National
NUTTY NOTES: A
kangaroo is just a huge mouse with springs in its legs!
They REALLY Soft and Cuddly?
Don't you believe it, mate! Koalas are feisty
little blokes who like to be left alone. For Koalas, eucalyptus
gum trees are the only game in town! They sleep in them, climb in
them, and eat the tender tip of the gum leaves. If you mom says
you're lazy, you can tell her that you are no match for the koala.
They spend 80% of their days sleeping - YAWN! They do move around
in the gum trees after sunset, nibbling away for a few hours. If
another koala sneaks onto their turf, a fight might break out, and
both angry furballs will bark loudly at each other. The baby Joey
is born, blind, hairless and less than an inch long. WOW! Then,
he crawls into his mum's pouch, and slurps milk from one of 2 teats.
Baby K hides inside Mom's pouch for 6 months. If your family
drives near a koala family, be careful not to run them over. Bush
fires also can kill these cute fellows. They are built for climbing,
not running. Koalas may look cuddly, but watch out for those CLAWS!
More fun koala
NUTTY NOTES: A koala
is just a crabby old man in a fur suit!
he made up of odd bits & pieces?
SHUSH. . . !The platypus
is shy. Loud noise will make them dive into the water. They are
fussy home builders too- building mud burrows in the banks of
only the finest freshwater lakes and streams. Platypus are weird!
They like to swim underwater with their eyes and ears closed.
Can you close YOUR ears? Pretty neat, eh? But they have to use
their webbed feet to swim DOWNWARDS all the time, because their
fur traps air, and this makes them buoyant. If they don't keep
swimming DOWN, they pop back up to the surface, like a cork! Beware,
male platypus come armed! A sharp, hollow, horny spur on the inside
of both hind leg ankles is always loaded. His venom gland shoots
a powerful and painful toxin. This spur is a nifty defense against
those determined to eat him. Platypus like to eat by moonlight,
and tasty aquatic insect larvae, shrimps and worms, are always
on their menu. No need for knives and forks! Just a duck-like
snout that dabs after goodies in mud, at the bottom of the water.
AND they have a unique family history -
real classy! They are Monotremes,
because they lay eggs instead of giving birth. Check out this
site for fun platypus
facts -- PLUS
A platypus is what you get when the cook serves leftovers!
*KOOKABURRAS:Are they really laughing at jokes? Kookaburras are a noisy bunch of feathers that like
to roost in the Aussie bush. . The Kookaburra's raucous laughing call
wakes many Aussies who live near the bush country. If you want someone
to sing sweetly in your choir, DON"T ask a kookaburra! This bird's
chorus of crazy laughter will ruin any tune. They do people one good
turn though. Kookaburras think snakes are delicious, and mice are
a real treat - UGH! Perhaps I shouldn't mention that they also drool
over baby birds, and steal them whenever they can. Can you imagine
living in a termite mound? NO? Well kookaburras will settle for a
termite mound, if a hollow tree trunk is not for sale! Mum ad Dad
Kooka look after the babies together - real family values, mate. And
even feed them when the are teenagers, and leave the nest. Hear the
kookaburra laugh and read more fun
details here . . . . Plus
a sound Video
ABORIGINAL LEGEND! . . . . . .The
Australian aborigines have a legend about the Kookaburra. When the
sun rose for the first time, the god Bayame ordered the kookaburra
to utter its loud, almost human laughter in order to wake up mankind
so that they should not miss the wonderful sunrise. The aborigines
also believed that any child who insulted a kookaburra would grow
an extra slanting tooth.
Kookaburras see the whole world as one
big laughing matter.
*ECHIDNA: He's a prickly customer!
The Echidna (also known as the Spiny Anteater) makes
the platypus look like a party animal! It thinks being a primitive
species of egg-laying mammal is an excuse to be a hermit. On top
of this, it has the monotreme title, like the platypus. This, "Please
don't knock, I refuse to answer,"critter, has tough spines
covering the top of its body. YIIKES, I'll bet he's not on too many
menus! The echidna is lonely for a l-o-n-g time - he can live for
over 50 years.. When attacked, the echidna will quickly burrow in
the ground, or curl up in a ball. Mama E lays a single egg in the
pouch on her belly. The egg has a leathery shell, and junior pops
out in 10 days. Baby echidna is no prize - he's born blind and hairless.
The milk for junior comes from a gland in mum's pouch. Hey, seems
pouch milk-bars are popular with Aussie animals! Would
you believe a baby echidna is called a "PUGGLE?"
Cripes, I'd sue! It's no surprise, that in a few weeks, when
baby develops those nasty sharp spines, Mum kicks him out of her
pouch. Echidnas scarf up ants, termites, insects and worms, with
their fantastically long and sticky tongue. For extra fun facts
Echidna are just footballs that grew spikes!
dad is a house husband! What's the use of being a bird if you can't fly?
Well, you'll have to ask an emu for that question.. Emus are shaped
like a giant feathered egg on legs - very tall thin legs. Their
long neck weaves about, as the eyes in their small head squint at
you. The African ostrich and the South American rhea are their kissing
cousins. Not flying can't matter too much, because they have survived
in Australia for 80 million years. Emus like it HOT - deserts, forests
and on the plains. At 5 to 6 feet tall, they weigh up to 150 lb..
No wonder they can't fly! Emus are super short distance racers -up
to 60 kilometers an hour, with a stride of about 9 feet. WHEW! Talk
about big. Emus guzzle a lot of water, drinking 2 to 4 gallons daily.
Who knew they were fun creatures, enjoying water play or a mud bath?
And watch those muscular legs! One kick, and you are over the moon!
Emu dads are house husbands - he raises the kids. Mum's super liberated
and outa there!
*DINGO - He'll run you down, mate. WOOF! WOOF! Yes, dingoes are DOGS - Australia's
native dog in fact. That is, if you consider arriving in Australia
3500 to 4000 years ago makes them eligible. DNA testing, that magical
stuff in all of us, says that dingoes evolved 135,000 years ago,and
were the world's first domestic dog. They even have the wolf beat,
predating him by a good margin.. A 'marker' has been found in the
Dingo which is not present in the wolf, making the Dingo a separate
species. All this hot scientific stuff means, is that the dingo
is #1 in the dog stakes, making it the great, great, great, and
on-and-on, grandfather of all 600 true breeds on the earth today.
GO DINGOES! More great dingo
If a dingo is a pack animal, what does he pack?
*WILD AUSSIE BIRDS - Not record
company would offer them a singing contract.
Assorted Australian parrots, cockatoos
and other wild birds are truly awesome. You need dark glasses so their
colors won't dazzle you. If you took some of these wild Aussie parrots
to McDonald's, they would eat from the garden menu;sweet nectar, fluffy
pollen, and a side dish of fresh, live insects - TO GO!. . . . . .
. . . .. . Visit
this site to see vivid pictures of every species. FEATHERS
RULE, mate! Click
Here for bucket loads of tid-bits about your Aussie feathered
My mum used to
live in a rooming house where the landlady had a sulfur crested cockatoo.
This bird knew a lot of words and sentences, and mimicked everyone
very well. Each day, his owner hung him outside on the verandah in
his cage. Sometimes she would call my mum, "Mrs. Lynch, are you
there?" Mum would come out of her room, and they would chat a
while. It wasn't long before that cockatoo could say those words in
exactly the same voice as her owner. Soon, poor Mum couldn't tell
whether it was the bird or its owner who was calling her. After that,
the feathered mimic had to stay indoors for a while, to give Mum a
NOTES: Aussie parrots are nothing
but chickens with fabulous feathers!
*MARSUPIAL MOUSE - A real meanie!
Marsupial mice are feisty, so don't
go poking them. If you do, they'll tell you off with much hissing,
nasty chattering, and lots of tail thrashing. These blokes come in
shades of gray, brown and speckled. It's a wonder they don't trip
over their tails, because they are as long as their bodies. They like
to eat at restaurants that serve meat, meat, and more meat! Home is
in a burrow in the hottest place they can find. You can keep your
air-conditioning! This mousey is very territorial. He marks his home
territory with secretions from a scent gland, and leaves droppings
and urine in certain places. POO! What a smelly, messy home he must
have. Mama Mouse carries up to six young on her teats for about eight
weeks. She suckles them in a nest for a further eight weeks. These
juniors ride on their mothers side or back. Whew! I'll bet her back
aches. These mice are seriously weird. They
don't drink water! All the moisture they need comes from the
flesh and blood of the juicy small bugs, lizards, and other creepies
they eat.- YUCK! For more gross mousey doings. . . . . click
NUTTY NOTES: Marsupial
mice are just tiny kangaroos without the springs in their legs!
LIZARD - A surprise package!
How would you like to be named Chlamydosaurus?
Well, that's the Latin name the Australian Frillneck Lizard is stuck
with. Frilly spends 95% of his time hanging vertically on tree trunks.
No, that's not weird, it's how he catches breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Caterpillars, massed swarms of bees, wasps and winged termites -
YUM! They all end up in his tummy. He also likes to keep an eye
on his territory, and any rival frillnecks that try to sneak some
of his goodies. The big frilly only climbs out of his tree to eat.
On the ground he often stands upright - just to keep an eye on things.
They bask on tree trunks in the early morning, and hide in the shade
of the canopy in the heat of the day. Frillnecks
never need glasses. WHY? Because their eyesight is so good.
When they spot food they like, the frilled lizard runs and grabs
it, then hurries back to his tree. NO they
don't eat barbecue! But the
best hunting time for them is after a bushfire. WHY? The fire has
cleared away the undergrowth and edible goodies are easier to spot
- makes sense, right.
Frillies have the art of the bluff
down cold. If threatened, they open their mouth wide, and erect
their frill. Frilly hopes the bright orange and red scales on the
underside of the frill will scare you to death! To add to the bluff,
he'll hiss, and jump around.. But don't worry, he soon turns chicken
and runs on his hind legs to the nearest tree and hides.
A female frillneck lizard lays a clutch of 8 to 14 eggs.
- whew! More Details: http://australian-animals.net/liz.htm
Frillneck Lizards are small dinosaurs that
forgot they were supposed to be extinct.
*MAGPIE - Just a frustrated pop star. Magpies have a beautiful "Warbling
Carol" (carolling) thatis heard across Australia in the bush,
on farms and in Urban backyards. They call for partners, and also
to warn other birds this is their territory The notes become shorter
when distressed, and a young magpie's "begging for food"
call is most insistent. Found right across Australia. They require
open ground to feed, some trees to roost in. This describes a lot
of Australias agriculture and bush landscapes. Australian
Magpies have adapted well to the increase of man's Urban
cities, and they can be found in surban parks and gardens.
NOTES: Magpies never heard a song they didn't like - especially
those they create themselves.
*KINGFISHER - great fishermen The Azure Kingfisher
is found following Australia's coastline from the top of the Northern
Territory all the way down the East coast, and including Tasmania.
This Kingfisher frequents rivers and streams, bilabongs, lagoons
etc with overhanging low branches
never need bait to catch their dinner.
*TASMANIAN DEVIL - Temper! Temper! The Tasmanian devil (Sarcophilus harrisii)
is a carnivorous marsupial of the family Dasyuridae. Found wild
only on the Australian island state of Tasmania. The size of a small
dog, it became the largest carnivorous marsupial in the world, following
the extinction of the thylacine in 1936. It is characterised by
its stocky and muscular build, black fur, pungent odour, extremely
loud and disturbing screech, keen sense of smell, and ferocity when
feeding. It hunts prey and scavenges carrion, as well as eating
household waste from your garbage can - YIKES! Although it is usually
solitary, it sometimes eats with other devils, and it defecates
in a communal location. Despite its rotund appearance, the devil
is capable of surprising speed and endurance. More
911 if a Tasmanian Devil family move into your street. RUN!
*WEDGE-TAILED EAGLE - Watch out! The Wedge-tailed Eagle is found throughout
mainland Australia, Tasmania and southern New Guinea. The Wedge-tailed
Eagle has long wings (wingspan 2.3 m), a characteristic long, wedge-shaped
tail, and legs that are feathered all the way to the base of the
toes. The bill is pale pink to cream, the eye brown to dark brown,
and the feet off-white. Young Wedge-tailed Eagles are mid brown
in colour with reddish-brown heads and wings. They become progressively
blacker for at least the first ten years of their lives. They eat
both live prey and carrion. Their diet reflects the available prey,
but the most important live items are rabbits and hares.
Wedge-tailed Eagles may hunt singly, in pairs, or in larger groups.
Working together, a group of eagles can attack and kill animals
as large as adult kangaroos. This explains the scientific name of
the Wedge-tailed Eagle, which means 'bold eagle'. Under ideal conditions,
an eagle can lift about 50% of its body weight. Often, eagles may
cache food items on a branch near the nest area. More Details
can serve them anything if they come to dinner - dead, alive or
Wombats are large burrowing mammals found only in Australia. Being
rather timid (wimpy) and primarily nocturnal, they're difficult
to observe in their natural habitat and haven't been well studied.
They weren't even noticed by European settlers for ten years. Information
is somewhat scarce, and what there is, is often contradictory. Facts
were gathered from a number of sources, so differing viewpoints
are included where appropriate.
are NOT bats withou wings -- they are too tubby to fly!
* BILBY or Rabbit Eared Wombat
SOME BILBY FACTS:
The Greater Bilby (Macrotis lagotis) is on the endangered list,
the Lesser Bilby (Macrotis leucura) is believed to be extinct.
The Greater Bilby, usually referred to as the Bilby, is the largest
of the bandicoots, measuring up to 55cm in length (body only) with
a tail up to 29cm long. Adult males weigh up to 2.5 kg and females
about half that.
Bilbies are sometimes called Rabbit-Eared Bandicoots.They are marsupials.
Their pouch opens backwards, so that when they dig in the dirt their
pouch won't get filled with the dirt. The word Bilby is comes from
the Yuwaalaraay, one of many Aboriginal languages
Refer to the Bilby Fact Sheet at the bottom of this page for links
and more information:
A Bilby, in the form of a soft toy, has been to the highest point
in on earth! In May 1997, Tashi Tenzing, the grandson of Tenzing
Norgay, climbed to the summit of Mount Everest. The following is
an extract from "Tenzing and the Sherpas of Everest" written
by Tashi, and his wife Judy, who live in Sydney. "A
Bilby, in the form of a soft toy, has been to the highest point
in on earth! In May 1997, Tashi Tenzing, the grandson of Tenzing
Norgay, climbed to the summit of Mount Everest." http://members.optusnet.com.au/bilbies/About_Bilbies.htm NUTTY NOTES: A Bilby
is just a mouse trying to be like Dumbo!
The sugar glider (Petaurus breviceps) is a
small, omnivorous, arboreal, and nocturnal gliding possum from the
marsupial family. The common name refers to its preference for sugary
foods, such as nectar and tree sap, and its ability to glide through
the air, much like a flying squirrel. They both look similar in
appearance and habits, although not closely related. The scientific
name, Petaurus breviceps, translates from Latin as "short-headed
rope-dancer", a reference to their canopy acrobatics.
Sugar gliders are characterized by their gliding membrane, known
as the patagium. This extends from their forelegs to hindlegs.
Gliding serves as an efficient means of locating food and evading
predators. They are covered in soft, pale grey to brown fur-lighter
on their underside. The sugar glider is endemic to mainland Australia
and New Guinea and its surrounding islands.
More Glider Facts: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sugar_glider
Gliders like to surprise enemies by "gliding"
to savety at the last moment!
* CARPET SNAKE or CARPET PYTHON -
Carpet pythons feed after dark. They primarily
eat mice, rats and birds, although smaller pythons prefer to eat
lizards. Often encountered in suburban areas, you couldn't find
a better rat catcher. Like most pythons, the carpet python has heat
sensitive pits on their upper and lower lips, which help them detect
the body heat of their prey.
Carpet pythons can be found in habitats ranging from tropical rainforest
of north-east of Australia to arid and coastal regions. The species
is currently divided into six distinct subspecies.
This beautiful non-venomous
python's body has patterns which are blotchy yellow and black. The
carpet python may grow to reach lengths of up to 3.5 metres. It
spends most of the day coiled up in a tree or rafter, or basking
in an open area.For
information about breeding etc, click this link. https://www.australiazoo.com.au/our-animals/reptiles/boas-and-pythons/carpet-pythons
NUTTY NOTES: A Carpet Snake just wants to give
you a BIG SQUEEZE!
would love to hear from you if you enjoyed
this page or read my books.
promise to reply to any e-mails your chils sends me -