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Drop in on the Cutest Animals in Australia
Australia is home to some of the cutest and most photogenic animals. Everyone knows we have Koalas and Kangaroos, but did you know we have other unique birds and animals too?
Australia is a big country filled with differing landscapes including deserts, rainforests, reefs, swamps, bushlands and mountains. Each of these unique landscapes are diverse habitats and homes for the some of the most cutest animals on our shores.
Australia is is home to some of the most interesting wildlife you’ll ever see and range from fascinating and cute to absolutely terrifying.
Drop in on Australia’s cutest animals
Bandicoots are marsupials that are unique to Australia and nearby Papua New Guinea.
There are over 20 species of bandicoot. Most are the size of rabbits and have long legs, thin tails and pointed noses.
Bandicoots are omnivores that forage for food in their bush habitat.
Bilbys are small marsupials that are well adapted to living in a desert environment.
They have strong legs and claws for burrowing and finding food. Their long tongues help them to forage for seeds, insects and bulbs.
Fun Fact: The bilby is such cute little animal that Australian’s celebrate Easter with chocolate replicas of bilbys, instead of chocolate rabbits.
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Cassowaries are large, flightless birds found in northern Australia.
Fast runners, cassowaries can also use their powerful legs and clawed feet as weapons.
The Cassowary is found in rainforests across north eastern Australia.
Not too cute! There are two types of crocodile found in waterways around Australia. The Freshwater Crocodile, and the larger Saltwater Crocodile. Both are dangerous and ambush predators.
Saltwater crocodiles are not only the world’s largest reptiles … they’re also the world’s largest land predators!
The dingo is a wild dog that lives in the deserts, grasslands and forests throughout Australia.
Dingoes play an important role in indigenous culture featuring in stories and ceremonies. Aboriginal rock art show depictions of dingoes in early aboriginal stone carvings.
Dingos are the only large predator on the continent and literally enjoy top-dog status among Australian animals.
Emus are soft-feathered, brown flightless birds with long necks and legs, and can stand up to 1.9 metres (6.2 ft) in height.
Emus can travel great distances, and can sprint at 50 km/h (31 mph). They forage for plants and insects.
Like Cassowary’s, emus use their sharp claws and webbed feet to defend themselves against aggressors.
Echidnas are members of a unique group of animals called ‘Monotremes’. Monotremes are mammals that lay eggs.
Also known as ‘spiny anteaters’, an echidna’s diet consists of ants and termites, but they are not related to the anteaters of the Americas.
Frilled Neck Lizards
Frill-necked lizards are found mostly in the northern tropics of Australia. They get their name due to having large ruffs around their necks, which open when threatened. The frill can also help regulate the lizard’s body temperature.
Frilled neck lizards run on their two hind legs and look quite comical as they scurry off into the bush. These lizards belongs to the dragon family and can grow up to 1 metre in length.
There are over 30 million kangaroos in Australia.
Kangaroos, like many of Australia’s most famous animals, are marsupials. Wallabies and Wallaroos are closely related to the kangaroo.
Their babies live in the mothers pouch as they feed and grow. Kangaroos get around by jumping on their hind legs rather than walking.
Arguably the Koala is considered one of Australia’s cutest critters of all. With a big nose, fluffy ears, and a soft smooth furry grey coat, most people make sure they see a koala on their visit.
These marsupials spend most of their lives sleeping and digesting eucalyptus leaves. These leaves contain little in the way of nutrients, and koalas spend up to 20 hours a day sleeping in order to conserve energy.
Often called koala bears, however Koalas are not members of the bear family.
The loud distinctive call of the laughing kookaburra is one of our most recognisable birds.
Kookaburras are almost exclusively carnivorous, eating mice, snakes, insects, small reptiles, and the young of other birds.
Kookaburras are in the kingfisher family. They have long beaks and brown and white feathers, with flecks of bright blue in their wings.
The numbat is a small creature that looks like a cross between a rat and cat.
The numbat has a reddish-yellow coat with stripes across its back, and a fuzzy tail.
Numbats use their pointed muzzles to forage in the dirt for termites, which they scoop up with their long tongues.
Is the platypus the world’s weirdest creature?
With the bill of a duck, the tail of a beaver, and the feet of an otter, it really is a strange-looking animal.
The platypus is a mammal, but lays eggs rather than giving birth to its young. Platypuses have waterproof fur that allows them to spend most of their time in the water.
Possums are small-to-medium-sized nocturnal marsupials and usually live in or around trees.
The Western Pygmy possum is the smallest possum in the world, with a body length of only 6.5 centremetres.
The common Brush Tail possum is the biggest, often as large as a domestic cat.
The quokka is a herbivorous marsupial around the size of a cat.
Quokkas look like miniature kangaroos, and their curious nature and charming looks make them popular with people.
The quokka uses its two front paws to forage with, and eats leaves and berries.
Quolls are nocturnal and often found in trees. They are carnivorous marsupials that eat rabbits, lizards, and small birds.
Quolls have brown fur coats with distinctive white spots.
The Sugar Glider has flaps of skin between its arms and legs. These act as wings, and allow the sugar glider to jump from trees and glide through the air.
The sugar glider is an omnivore (i.e. it eats both meat and plants). Its diet includes insects, leaves and eucalyptus sap.
Note: As a child I had a pet sugar glider and would walk around the house with him on my shoulder. He flew off one night but left me with some lovely memories!
The Tasmanian Devil is found only in the Australian island state of Tasmania. Chlamydia has affected over 80% of the Devil population.
The Tasmanian Devil makes a distinctive screeching sound as he feeds.
The thorny devil is only found in inland regions of Australia. It has grooves in its skin that channel moisture to its mouth, and a false head to confuse predators!
Despite its aggressive appearance, the thorny devil is not dangerous. It’s primary food source is ants.
Wombats have strong claws and rat-like teeth, to support their burrowing lifestyle. As mammals, their backwards-facing pouch protects their new-born young from dirt as they dig their burrows.
Wombats are nocturnal creatures and stay buried in their burrows to keep cool.
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There is no doubt that Australia’s critters are some of the cutest
Get up close and personal with many of them in our zoos and wildlife parks or, if you’re lucky, you might just spot them in their natural habitat.
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Have you dropped in on any of Australia’s cutest animals recently? Let us know if there are any of our Critters we haven’t featured yet. Australia has so many unique animals!