Wombats are one of the most interesting marsupials found in Australia. These medium sized animals are really interesting and fun to watch especially when they pop out their heads from their burrows.
Fact 1 Description
The Wombats are medium sized marsupials and are the second largest of them all. They are in an average 90 to 115 cm in length. They usually have a tan, gray or brown color fur. The ears are small, jutting out from a round head and have long fur covering the body. Some of them have hairy noses but not all. This is the distinguishing mark of the different species. Wombats look more like small bears with coarse brittle-like fur that vary in colors like sandy hues to dark shades of brown and black.
Fact 2 Habitat
The Wombats prefer to live in wet, forested areas and slopes for they find it easier for good burrow drainage. The common wombats live mostly in south-eastern coastal regions of Australia including the eastern parts of New South Wales, southern Victoria, south-eastern South Australia and the entire Tasmania. They love to live in quiet places and as they are nocturnal in nature that you will hardly spot them. It is a rare sight even for people who live in the wild.
Fact 3 Specialty
The large pudgy mammal being a marsupial or pouched animal gives birth to tiny, undeveloped young ones that crawl into the mothers’ pouches in the bellies where they are nurtured by the mother. Usually, the wombat child remains in its mother’s pouch for about five months before they see the light of the world. Even after it comes out of the pouch it scrambles to its mother for food and protection for about two months till it is seven months old and can take care of itself.
Fact 4 Food Habits
Wombats are herbivores. They eat grasses, roots, shoots and bark of trees which they keep gnawing continuously in order to manage their ever growing teeth at a proper size. Wombats are nocturnal animals and emerge at night to find food. Their teeth are like the rodents that keep growing unless gnawed down. Wombats are found to live for about 26 years.
Fact 5 How Wombats Build Burrows
Wombats live in burrows under the ground that look more like a tunnels. They have long claws and they use these sharp claws to dig the ground to make their homes. Their burrows can easily become an extensive network of underground tunnels that lead to small chambers. Although most Wombats are solitary animals, some of them have their own colonies under the ground.
Fact 6 Their Variety
There are three different varieties of Wombats and most of them are found in the continent of Australia. The three kinds are the Common Wombat, the Northern Hairy-Nosed Wombat and the Southern Wombats that do not have hairs on their noses. The common Wombat is thought to be a descendent of the giant combat that existed around 50 million years ago.
Fact 7 Enemies of Wombats
Since Wombats are nocturnal animals, they have a few predators that include foxes and dingoes. The Wombats do not have anything to defend themselves but the predators that prey on them find it very difficult to follow their narrow and complex tunnels. Hence they are safe in their underground burrows.
Fact 8 Damages Caused By Homes Of Wombats
The burrowing of the Wombats to build their homes causes a lot of damage to fields and pastures and is considered as nuisance by farmers and ranchers. It is for this particular behavior of Wombats that they are hunted and the giant wombats have become extinct mainly for this reason. Some hunt them as a sport while others for their fur. Today it is one of the endangered species of marsupials