Tag Archives: koala

To see the post written by Mrs. Yollis and her class once a surprise package arrived...

Meet Walter the Wombat

Wombats, Marsupials and Joeys

Following the arrival of a friendly wombat to Mrs. Yollis and her class in California, I wanted to share a couple extra photos.

Wombat

There are three species of wombat still to be found in Australia.

In my area, we see the common wombat (Vombatus ursinus). They are herbivores and live in burrows. Normally, they aren't see during the day but can be seen venturing out at dusk. I have seen them in the daytime but this is unusual. Unfortunately, wombats are sometimes killed when crossing roads but groups such as WIRES plus the staff at Potoroo Palace care for joeys if their mother is killed. The fathers don't take part in raising young. The photo below is of an orphaned wombat joey. It was in the care of Potoroo Palace staff. Potoroo Palace seeks to return injured and orphaned animals to the wild if at all possible.

One of Potoroo Palace's greatest wildlife heroes, and a friend, is Alexandra Seddon. She has devoted her life to wildife and the environment. A documentary of her life and care for the environment was just released. Click here to see the short about Alexandra and someof what she has achieved.

Alexandra Seddon

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Wombats live in burrows.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Seems a little yucky but below is a photo of wombat droppings. They are easy to identify because they have a cubic shape.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

I realised I hadn't added a video clip of wombats to my You Tube channel so I have added a brief one showing Bert the Wombat taken at Potoroo Palace back in 2011.

Kangaroos and Wallabies

Most people know of kangaroos and the smaller wallabies. Not only are some species native to my area, they sometimes feed on my front lawn and are an extra obstacle for golfers at a local golf course. Also marsupials, the females have pouches. They are not all the large kangaroos we see on TV. Here are just a few species.

Parma Wallaby  (Macropus parma) Taken at National Zoo in Camberra, Australia's capital city.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

 

Tree Kangaroo Taken at National Zoo in Camberra, Australia's capital city. Yes it climbs. There are 12 species of tree kangaroo found in New Guinea and northern Australia. The photo is of a Goodfellow's Tree Kangaroo (Dendrolagus goodfellowi) and is found in New Guinea.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Eastern Grey Kangaroo (Macropus giganteus) - Very common in my area and sometimes have fed on my front lawn. The first photo shows females and joey too big for the pouch at Potoroo Palace. The second photo is of a male in the wild. He was about my height (183cm - 6').

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

This photo below shows Alexandra Seddon at Potoroo Palace. She is holding a swamp wallaby (wallabia bicolor). I see more of this species of wallaby thank eastern grey kangaroos.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Here is one of the short videos I have made showing the Eastern Grey Kangaroo at Potoroo Palace.

Koalas

Koalas (Phascolarctos cinereus) rival kangaroos as the best known Australian animals. The first photo is of Suzie the Koala and the second of Blinky at Potoroo Palace in 2011. They were the parents of Sapphire. Blinky and Suzie passed away a few years back but Sapphire lives on a now is a mother. The video shares a little of Sapphire's life and includes her emerging from Suzie's Pouch. The video clip was made over two years from 2011 to 2013.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Did you notice Suzie has a much larger and more defined white patch on the chest? This is a feature of females.

Other Marsupials - Antechinus

There are so many marsupial species in Australia apart from wombats, kangaroos, wallabies and koalas, too many to show here but I thought I would add a little about one of the smallest marsupials. The photo shows a mammal expert holding an antechinus in his hand. It was taken when I was recording activities in a local biological/environmental survey.

Antechinus are the size of mice and are often mistaken for them but they are true marsupials and females have a pouched area to carry young. Antechinus have pointier snouts than placental mice (common mouse).

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

9 Comments

This is a short post about the koala. Make certain you read down to the end of the post for something very special to celebrate the 100,000th visitor to this blog. Thank you for all of the visits to my blog. I had no idea it would be such a success when I started it in 2012.

http://www.rasaint.net/ - Glitter Graphics

Koala - Phascolarctos cinereus

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Above is a photo of Sapphire the koala. She was born in 2011 to...

Suzie

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

and Blinky

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

 

Did you notice Suzie had a large area on her breast much whiter than Blinky? Female koalas tend to have a larger, whiter area than males. You can see this on Sapphire as well. Seeing a koala up in a tree, you can often tell if it's a boy or girl from the breast area.

About Sapphire

Koalas can live  up to 13 to 18 years in the wild. Both Suzie and Blinky passed on in 2012. This left Sapphire alone.

Would she be sad?  Koalas in the wild are normally solitary, i.e. they live alone, and only mix socially about 15 minutes on average a day, except in breeding season (October to May). Because their diet of eucalyptus leaves is very poor in nutrition, they can spend around 20 hours a day sleeping. I don't think koalas would be sad in the way we might be when they have leaves to eat and a place to sleep.

It can take a human child 9 months to develop before being born but koalas only about 38 days before being born and making their way into the mothers' pouches. Once in the pouch, they continue growing and can spend 6 to 7 months before they are too big to stay in the pouch.

Along their life's journey in the pouch, when the koala joey is large enough it at first  sticks its head out of the pouch. As Sapphire grew, she spent more and more time out of Suzie's pouch.  I was there to record some of her life's journey.

Koalas in the Wild

Koalas in the wild are listed as vulnerable. That's one step from being endangered and means we must take steps to preserve them and help their numbers grow in the wild.

For koalas, one of the biggest dangers is habitat loss. As trees are cut down, groups of koalas can be isolated, known as fragmentation of habitat.

When their habitat is fragmented, they can face the dangers of crossing roads or attacks by dogs as they try moving  from one treed area to another. They can walk along the ground but prefer to stay in the trees. Below is a short video clip of Sapphire walking put together from a series of photos.

And now for a 100,000th Visitor celebration...

Sanctuaries such as Potoroo Palace rescue injured koalas and also have breeding programs to help keep koalas for our future. There are groups who concentrate on care for animals in the wild and educating people about our wildlife and environment. One such group is known as Backyard Buddies.

Each year Backyard Buddies contact me about their current fundraising goals. When I received the phone call towards the end of 2014, they explained for 2014 their goal was to raise funds to help animals in the wild. To do this, they sell special buddies and so, supporting such groups when I can, I purchased one of their buddies. Because of the amount of white, I suspect my buddy is female but am too polite to ask.

 

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

The buddy is 30cm (1 foot) tall and doesn't yet have a name.

To celebrate the 100,000th visitor to my blog, the buddy pictured above wants to find a new home. All you will need to do is leave a comment, "Backyard Buddies",  in the comments section and I will carry out a random draw on March 1 this year.

There are some rules to remember...

1. Do not, in your comment, give any personal details. Safety online is very important. 

2. The buddy can only be won by a class or school and not by individuals.

3. Individual class members can leave a comment but only their class can win. Individual class members must have permission from their teacher in order to be included.

4. Your comment need only say, "Backyard Buddy". As all comments need my approval, your comment will not appear on my blog until the comment has been approved.

5. The eligible comments close at the end of February 28, 2015, allowance being made so all time zones reach midnight on that day.

6. The random number selector I use will select a number.  With the first comment received being number 1, each comment will be numbered consecutively. The comment corresponding to the random number will be deemed winner providing I can contact the school concerned.

Check on March 2 to see if your class or school is the winner. I will attempt to email your teacher, class or school to find a delivery address for your class or school. The buddy will be sent as a regular post parcel, air mail if the winner is outside Australia.

Upcoming other blogging milestones...

200th post - Some time this year I will make my 200th post on this blog.

3rd Birthday - On May 21, 2015 this year my blog will turn 3. 

4 Comments

To see the Battalion Bloggers post...

A Surprise Package Inspires Action!

Hello Battalion Bloggers,

I am sorry I have been mostly off line since the beginning of the year. The New Year is normally slow for me but this year has been very busy. I am trying to catch up a little now in between tasks.

One of Australia’s two major supermarket chains had a promotional idea. They decided to release animal cards children (including big ones like me) could collect. With the success of the first series on “grown up” animals, they ran a new very cute series on baby animals. I set to work and managed to collect three sets with the help of local staff and then had to decide where they should go. Australian children didn’t need them because they could get their own so two sets headed to Canada and one to USA.

I can see by your bar graph, some animals caught your interest more than others. I know I have favourites I like to photograph but my favourites are usually what I am photographing at that time.

Your comments…

TREE ANIMALS

Ethan – Flying foxes are very common in many areas of Australia (click Australia to see a map) and Asia. Sometimes at night I have been in my backyard and heard the flying foxes squabbling in a neighbour’s fruit tree. They are also found in cities. I know of colonies in Sydney. Bats are fascinating. I have even encountered bats (not fruit bats) when I tried some spelunking (cave exploring).

Now a less pleasant fact...

Some wild flying foxes and other bats have been found to have a problem for humans. They can carry a virus known as lyssavirus and so shouldn’t be handled as infection could be fatal if untreated. Lyssavirus is closely related to the rabies virus. I always find it safer not to handle wild animals.

Of course, human activity can be a problem for bats through habitat destruction or, in the case of what I think is a dead little broad nosed bat, collisions with cars.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Melvin – The grey-headed flying fox is the bat I most commonly see at night around my home. Their squawks as they feed and squabble are easy to hear. Pteropus poliocephalus – my Latin isn’t great but I think the scientific name stands for wing (ptero), work (opus), greyish (polio), head (cephalus) so pteropus poliocephalus probably means grey-headed working wing.

According to Wikipedia, there are 60 species of flying fox bats in the world of which I think Australia has four, the little red, spectacled, black and grey-headed flying fox.

Catherine, Hilary, Aya and Jenna – Koalas are certainly picky eaters. Eucalypt trees (we also call them gum trees) are common and have a number of species in Australia but koalas won’t eat the leaves of all kinds. If we were to eat the leaves, we would become very sick because of the eucalyptus oil in the leaves but koalas are adapted to digesting the leaves. This can take some time. This is part of the reason koalas spend so much time sleeping. It saves energy so, rather than being lazy, they are being energy efficient. Would that make the “green” koalas?
Koalas don’t normally need to find and drink water because they take it in with the leaves but I have seen video of koalas after a fire has come through. If they survive, they can be very thirsty. Firefighters and animal rescue people have poured water in their hands and wild koalas they find have drunk from their hands. They are amazing little animals.

Jenna, a little extra information – A number of animals are known to swallow rocks or gravel to help digest plant foods. Such stones are known as gastroliths (mean stomach stone) and were even used by some dinosaurs. Many birds also use them for the same reason, they help digest food. As you know, chickens don’t have teeth to help chew food.

 

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes. This graphic should not be used without written permission from me.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.
This graphic should not be used without written permission from me.

LAND ANIMALS

Kennedy – I have seen mobs (the name for a group of kangaroos) of red kangaroos bounding across drier areas of Australia. The males can be around my height and are very strong. Did you know the males fight using their strong legs? Until I was able to deliver it to a zoo, I had a young, orphaned red kangaroo. When it saw me, it would hop up and kick me but was too small to cause any damage. It was calm when it got into a sack. For the young roo, it was like being in its mother’s pouch. There are no red kangaroos near where I live now. We mainly have eastern-grey kangaroos and wallabies. Kangaroos are only native to Australia.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

eastern grey kangaroos

Kelly – Joey is a term we Aussies use for the young of most marsupials. So kangaroo and koala babies are joeys. My favourite name for a baby animal goes to the young of the echidna and platypus. Echidnas and platypuses aren’t marsupials (pouched animals). They are monotremes, egg-laying mammals. Monotreme young are known as puggles.
Only responding to movement might seem odd but it appears in other animals. I think I read t-rex dinosaurs probably only responded to movement so, if you ever face one, stay still. 🙂 It wouldn’t work with lions.
Here’s a puzzle for you, if red kangaroos only detect motion, does the world disappear if the kangaroos are still and no wind moves grass and trees? I suspect there is some vision at all times but kangaroos only respond to movement because the signal is stronger.

This is a public domain image sourced through Wikimedia Commons.

This is a public domain image sourced through Wikimedia Commons.

Daniel – As you would have place names and other words taken from native languages, many names in Australia come from local Aboriginal names. Sometimes, names might be exactly native because early European settlers misunderstood.
For emu, we aren’t certain where the name originated. Wikipedia states it may have come from the Arabic for large bird and be used by early Portuguese explorers.
When checking on the world’s largest living birds, the emu may be second in height but I suspect the cassowary (found in Australia and New Guinea) is heavier and the Australian southern cassowary might grow slightly taller. The tallest bird know to have existed was probably the giant moa (Dinornis) originally found in New Zealand. They are thought to have become extinct mainly because of hunting by early Polynesian settlers (Maoris).

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes. This graphic should not be used without written permission from me.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.
This graphic should not be used without written permission from me.

Here are just a few Aboriginal names for emu from the very many languages…
Ngurruy (Ngiyampaa people of N.S.W.)
Kalthi (Paakantyi people of N.S.W.)
Dhinawan (Wiradjuri people of N.S.W.)
Kawir – (Wembawemba people of N.S.W.)
Warrhukaathi – (Diyori people of S.A.)

These words are taken from “Macquarie Aboriginal Words” – ISBN 97809497571

Sam – While I have seen bilbies in zoos, I haven’t seen them in the wild where they are endangered.  There is a national plan trying to help the bilby numbers grow again.

It may interest you to know something about Easter in Australia. You probably know about chocolate Easter eggs and Easter bunnies but, here in Australia, you can also buy Easter bilbies. Money raised from their sales helps to save the bilby through donation to conservation programs

This picture is in the public domain because its copyright has expired and was sourced through Wikimedia Commons.

This picture is in the public domain because its copyright has expired and was sourced through Wikimedia Commons.

Alex – Bearded dragons are interesting and I have held the spiky little guys and have seen them in the wild. They can be bought as pets here but you must be licenced in my state because all native reptiles are protected. They are not allowed to be collected from the wild.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Isaac – Tasmanian devils are interesting carnivorous marsupials (pouched animals). Early European settlers in Tasmania would hear the sounds of the devils and feared evil spirits might be at work.
I have seen devils in zoos but didn’t see them in the wild when I was in Tasmania. Despite their snarls and strong jaws, they are cute little guys but I wouldn’t place a finger near their mouths.
Wombats are very strong diggers. I often come across their burrows when hiking. I suspect the Tasmanian devils find it much easier to use an empty wombat burrow than digging their own.

Click the link below to hear Tasmanian devil sounds.

TasmanianDevilSounds

This audio file was sourced through "Community Audio" where it was listed without a creator or any copyright instructions. I assume it is in the public domain.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

I didn't have a Tasmanian devil photo in my collection but did have this drawing of mine.

Kate – I have not only seen many eastern blue-tongued lizards (skinks) in the wild, I have found them visiting my yard as they search for bugs or delicious snails (not the French escargot type). They are docile (not aggressive) but I tend to leave them alone unless they’re injured. I did once find one seriously hurt little guy in my yard and had to take it to a local vet but he didn’t survive the injury. I think perhaps a dog had attacked him. Dogs and cats can be dangerous for many small native animals. The video below is a northern blue tongue giving birth…

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes. This graphic should not be used without written permission from me.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.
This graphic should not be used without written permission from me.

Noam – Short-beaked echidnas are native to most areas of Australia, including around my home. I have had one exploring my yard and seen them in parks in my town as well as in the wild. They’re aren’t aggressive and can’t bite but, being monotremes (egg laying mammals), they are fascinating little guys. When threatened, they use their strong claws to hold on to the ground while they show their spines.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Peng Peng – I have seen dolphins off our coast a number of times, including bottlenose dolphins. They are beautiful animals and seem curious when they see humans in our waters. Bulls, cows and calves are good names although people often only think of cattle but the titles are used for other mammals including elephants.
Dolphins are part of the Order Cetacea of animals. Cetacea include whales, dolphins and porpoises.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes. This graphic should not be used without written permission from me.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.
This graphic should not be used without written permission from me.

I photographed these dolphins as they swam near the shore.

Claire – Bottlenose dolphins can be found in oceans around the world but I don’t think they tend to reach Canadian waters because of cooler temperatures.
Did you know some sharks like bottlenose dolphins, especially the calves? The problem for sharks is the dolphins can often protect themselves. Dolphins turn and charge the shark. Sometimes groups attack and have been know to kill a shark.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes. This graphic should not be used without written permission from me.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.
This graphic should not be used without written permission from me.

I believe this is a common dolphin. I photographed it while on a whale watching cruise off our coast.

Cohen – Port Jackson sharks can be found in Australian coastal waters but don’t tend to be along the most tropical areas. As the name suggests, they are also found in Port Jackson waters. You may not have heard of Port Jackson but it is the bay around which Sydney has been built.
As their diet includes mostly molluscs and similar creatures, they aren’t seen as dangerous to humans. Their egg cases are sometimes washed up on beaches and are easy to recognise.

This photo was sourced through Wikimedia Commons where it is listed as in the public domain.

This photo was sourced through Wikimedia Commons where it is listed as in the public domain.

Hannah – Black swans can be found on our saltwater lake or in large ponds. There is one area in a town only 35km from my home that can fill with water in wetter times. I once stopped to watch numerous black swans wandering along grassy areas near the water then realised all of the adults were being followed by cygnets. They can be aggressive if they think they or their babies are threatened.

Blac Swan pair

Amy – Turtles can be fascinating animals. My two nieces grew up in a Queensland town named Bundaberg. While Bundaberg is know for its fields of sugarcane, the coast east of the town is know for Mon Repos Conservation Park. Between November and March each year loggerhead, flatback and green turtles come ashore to lay their eggs in the beach sand.
Nightly tours during that period of the year allow visitors to see they turtles laying eggs or, 6 to 8 weeks later, see hatchlings emerging from the sand and heading to the water.
We all know humans are either male or female as they develop before birth but turtles are different. The temperature of the sand makes the difference for turtles. Higher temperatures help turtles hatch sooner and emerge as females. Cooler temperatures tend to result in males.

 

This photo was sourced through Wikimedia Commons where it is listed as in the public domain

This photo was sourced through Wikimedia Commons where it is listed as in the public domain

Martin – Australian sea lions can be seen around southern and south-western areas of Australia but not normally near where I live. We are more likely to find Australian fur seals in our waters. One old male was an annual visitor to a favourite rock in our town’s lake.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes. This graphic should not be used without written permission from me.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.
This graphic should not be used without written permission from me.

These are New Zealand fur seals. They have also been found along Australia's coastline.

Well, what started out with an intention to write a short comment seems to have blown out into something a little longer. It’s like much in life, we start with some knowledge and seem to collect more as life moves along. We learn. We share. We are all both teachers and students in life.

Learning is a lifelong journey we all travel. When we travel it with others our journey is all the richer.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes. This graphic should not be used without written permission from me.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.
This graphic should not be used without written permission from me.

2 Comments

In the comments of their poster entitled "Welcome to Grade THREE!", the Battalion Bloggers asked some questions. For their original post...

Welcome to Grade THREE!

Monitor Lizards

Perentie Lizards

This graphic has been sourced through Wikimedia Commons and is listed as in the public domain.

This graphic has been sourced through Wikimedia Commons and is listed as in the public domain.

The Perentie tend to live in central Australia across to Western Australia but are not native to my area. Their patterning is very attractive but I have only seen them in zoos and not in the wild. They are one of the monitor lizards.

 Lace Monitors

 The photo below shows a local lace monitor (goanna) I photographed while hiking. It was about 1.5m long and was seen eating an animal killed on the road. I have seen them a number of times.

Lace monitors are our second largest monitor lizards after the perentie. The perentie and lace monitor are thought to be slightly venomous but they are generally shy and run away if surprised. I have read fossils have been found in Australia showing komodo dragons, the largest of the monitors once also roamed Australia but are now only found in Indonesia.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Kangaroo, Koalas and Echidnas

I have seen kangaroos (and wallabies), koalas and echidnas in zoos and in the wild a number of times. There has been an echidna in my garden and kangaroos on the sports oval across the road. While wild koalas aren't common in my area, my local animal sanctuary has had them. Potoroo Palace has a female named Sapphire who was born in their sanctuary. I have known her since birth.

All of the video clips shown below were filmed by me at Potoroo Palace.

Kangaroo

The most common kangaroo in my area is the eastern grey kangaroo. The males can be up to around 2m tall and are common in my area. The pictured male was as tall as me. He watched me as I took his photo them he hopped away. They are only dangerous if they feel trapped.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Here is one of my short video clips showing eastern grey kangaroos.

Koala

The photo shows Sapphire when she was younger but had left her mother's pouch.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

The first of my video clips shows one of the first times Sapphire looked out from her mother's pouch after about 26 weeks inside the pouch.

The second clip shows Sapphire with her mother, Suzie. Too big, Sapphire stayed out of the pouch but with her mother.

With the loss of Blinky (father) and Suzie (mother), Sapphire is now the only koala at Potoroo Palace. I am certain the staff will be hoping for a suitable mate for her to continue their koala breeding.

Echidna

 I have seen echidna when hiking, in a park in my town and even in my own backyard. Their eyesight isn't good and they can't bite. If threatened, they dig their strong claws into the ground, hold on, and show only their spines.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

This is what they look like when they dig in.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

 

 Below is a video clip of Potoroo Palace's Spike.

The Outback.

There was an old saying, "Out back of Bourke". Others have talked about the outback starting at the dingo fence or  beyond the  "black stump", or a number of other areas but, mostly, outback refers to isolated inland areas of Australia. Unlike Canada, much of Australia is arid or semi-arid (deserts or near deserts) where rainfall is low and the soil is often reddish from iron oxides (rust). I'll share some photos, a number just scanned into the computer from old 35mm film slides, so you'll be the first to see them since many were taken back in 1985.

In 1981 and 1982 I was the Teacher in Charge of a one teacher school. It was very isolated and ranked number 6 in our state. Town was 100km away. The school was there for children from sheep and cattle stations. I lived 20km distant in a shearer's quarters on a 100,000 acre sheep station. We did have a computer on loan for about six weeks each year but the internet was still many years away for schools.

Below is a picture from 1982. Does it look isolated?

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

1985 - A Trip to Uluru (Ayers Rock)

By 1985, I was a teacher in an 850 student school in western Sydney. In 1983, I had organised a trip for some families to New Zealand but, for 1985, organised a trip through the centre of Australia. I was the 20 seater bus driver for most of the trip of over 7000km. Our first night was spent in the schoolroom of my old school pictured above. From there, we took dirt roads and a main highway until we reached Bourke. From there, we could have said we were in the outback.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Here are some photos from back then...

This is the Darling River in the town of Bourke. The Darling River is part of an inland water system stretching from Queensland through New South Wales (N.S.W.), Victoria and out to sea in South Australia(S.A.). In times of severe drought it can run dry or overflow in flood during big rain.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Heading north from Bourke along the Mitchell Highway, we stopped at the state border between N.S.W. and Queensland. The countryside was very flat but green as we had some rain the week before our trip.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

 We came to the mining town of Mt. Isa in Queensland. Mt. Isa is in the tropical but dry north of Australia. The red colouring of the soil is caused by iron oxide (rust) in the soil. Lead, silver, copper and zinc is mined there.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

From Mt. Isa, we headed west and crossed into the Northern Territory, heading about half way across N.T.. before heading south to the Red Centre (the middle of Australia). One of our stops was at Karlu Karlu (Devil's Marbles) where there are many large rocks seemingly balanced on their ends. They are important in traditional Aboriginal beliefs.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Along the way, we crossed from the tropics back into the sub-tropics. A sign marked the line of the Tropic of Capricorn but I liked what someone had painted on the road. (The man in the photo was one of the dads and you can see we had some rain.)

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Finally, we arrived in Alice Springs, the town close to the middle of Australia if not really then in our minds. Again, as you can see in the photo, we were travelling in a wet period. The Todd River passes through Alice Springs but flowing water is rarely seen so, when they hold the Henley-on-Todd Regatta, it's more a running race holding something looking like a sailing boat. If the river is flowing with water, they have to cancel their boat races. 🙂

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

The MacDonnell Ranges are the mountains around Alice Springs. There are many gorges and beautiful rock formations to visit. Below is a photo of Standley Chasm. The people in the photo will give you an idea of the size of the chasm.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Heading south out of Alice Springs, we stopped at the Henbury Meteorite Craters. The twelve craters were formed when a meteorite broke into pieces before hitting the ground it's estimated about 4,700 years back.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Finally, we came to our main aim for our tour, Uluru (Ayers Rock) and Kata Tjuta (The Olgas). Like Karlu Karlu, the sites have special significance to the local Aboriginal people who are the caretakers of the land. The first photo shows Uluru at sunset. It is the visible part of a huge monolith (single stone). The second photo shows the position where it's possible for visitors to climb the rock. The Aboriginal people wouldn't climb to the top of Uluru because of its cultural importance but they allow visitors if they choose to do so.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

As you walk or drive around the base of Uluru, there are many places with simple barriers and signs asking people to respect special places for Aboriginal people. There are sacred places for Aborginal men and women they ask visitors not to enter. The photo below shows some Aboriginal artwork on Uluru in a place where visitors can visit.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Approximately west of Uluru is Kata Tjuta (The Olgas). You can see them in the distance in the first photo taken from Uluru and part of them up close in the second and third.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Heading south from Uluru, we crossed into South Australia (S.A.).

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

...and eventually reached the opal mining town of Coober Pedy where many people have built their homes underground to protect them from summer heat. The area is dotted with opal mines.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

We started to see salt lakes. Water flowing all the way from Queensland during high rainfall, has nowhere to go when reaching the lakes. As the water evaporates, salt is left behind. The next photo, taken from our bus, shows a salt lake in the distance.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Upon reaching the town of Port Augusta, we headed north-east through the Flinders Ranges.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

We crossed the border into N.S.W. and travelled 1200km to reach home.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

 

2 Comments

For part 1 of this post...

http://rossmannellcomments.edublogs.org/2013/06/22/skyping-with-k123-from-canada-part-1-Koa-to-Jorja

For Part 3 of this post...

 http://rossmannellcomments.edublogs.org/2013/06/23/skyping-with-k123-from-canada-part-3-linden-to-the-end/

Part 2

Do I know about an Australian tree which has black hair on it?

This one need a little research because I didn't know what type of tree it might be. Here is a link I found that has some "hairy" trees. They might help you know what tree you mean. 🙂

Australian Tree Images

What types of animals are found in Australia?

 Australia has a large range of animals but some of our most famous are our marsupial (pouched) and monotreme (egg laying) mammals and our birds. In Part 1 of this post, I have shown some of our reptiles I have photographed so I will only show some mammals and birds.

Here are some of the birds I have seen visiting my home.

Kookaburra

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Magpie

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Australian Wood Duck

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Corella

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Crimson Rosella

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

King Parrot (male)

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Rainbow Lorikeet

This is the crazy type of bird I mentioned enjoyed a diet of sugary flower nectar. One of these birds flew between another person and me when we were talking.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Monotremes (egg laying) Mammals

The most ancient type of mammals are the monotremes. The females lay leathery eggs. On hatching, the young take milk from their mother like all mammals.

The only monotremes known to exist in our world today are the echidna and platypus. The platypus is only found in Australia. Echidnas are found in Australia and New Guinea.

The platypus is hard to photograph in the wild. While I have seen them, they are more like a ripple as they surface in creeks after searching for food. Not having a photo, here is my drawing of a platypus.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

The echidna (or spiny anteater) is a harmless animal whose only defence when attacked is to dig it's strong claws into the ground and show its spines. I have found one wandering in my garden. The photo is of a short beaked echidna. The long beaked echidna is found in New Guinea.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Marsupial (pouched) Mammals

Marsupial or pouched animals are born very tiny. They make their way up their mothers fur and into the pouch where they can attach to a nipple. When they grow too large, they start to come out of the mother's pouch and eventually stay out. Here are some photos and drawings.

Brushtail Possum

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Wombat - This joey (young marsupial) lost his mother on the road.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Tiger Quoll

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Koala - Sapphire is the baby of Blinky and Suzie

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Red Kangaroo - the largest of the kangaroos

This is a public domain image sourced through Wikimedia Commons.

This is a public domain image sourced through Wikimedia Commons.

Tasmanian Devil

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Eastern Grey Kangaroo mob - groups of kangaroos are called mobs.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

 Diprotodon (extinct) - When the first native Australians arrived, these huge marsupials still roamed the land.

Wikimedia Commons graphic created by Dmitry Bogdanov

Wikimedia Commons graphic created by Dmitry Bogdanov

Thylacine - Tasmanian Tiger - hunted to extinction. The last known thylacine died in captivity in the 1930s. Some believe they still exist in isolated areas of Tasmania.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Our animals even feature on the Australian Coat of Arms. Take a kangaroo and an emu...

 

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Add a little wattle

 

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Show the seven pointed Federation Star and the emblems of each state and you have the Australian Coat of Arms.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

What did I teach when I was a teacher?

When I was at university, I earned a Bachelor of Science degree. This meant if I taught high school (Grades 7 to 12) I would have taught science and possibly maths. Instead, I chose to gain a Diploma of Education in primary (Kindergarten to Grade 6) education. By teaching primary students I could teach English, Science, Maths, Social Studies, Music, Art, and Craft.

When computers came along, I was able to teach computer skills to classes and teachers. I first used computers back in 1975 and in class in 1981. Because I have many interests, I thought primary school would allow me to share much more than high school. Now, I share many of my interests online with classes around the world.

 For a class looking at Australia -

Australian Flag

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Aboriginal Flag

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Torres Strait Islander Flag

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Some Audio Files

Australia's National Anthem - as sung by a combined choir in a performance I filmed...

 Advanced Australia Fair

Many official functions start with an Acknowledgement of Country in order to recognise the traditional owners of the land...

Acknowledgement of Country

The didjeridoo was made from a hollowed branch and was part of many ceremonies. The hitting of sticks or boomerangs together often accompanied them.

Sticks and Didjeridoo

Below are links to Australian related posts on my blogs including links to others. I hope they are of some help...

HMB Endeavour at Eden - Replica of Captain James Cook's HMS Endeavour visited  in 2012. James Cook was the first explorer from Europe/UK known to have sailed along Australia's east cost.

My Region of Australia - A general look at my area of Australia featuring the old family dairy farm, scenic photos, beach activities, and Australian animals.

Tasmania – Sharing old photos - Looks at the Australian island state of Tasmania and a little of our convict heritage.

Older Australian Currency - Australia uses dollars and cents these days but before 1966 used pounds, shillings and pence.

Aboriginal Cultural Resource Links for the Roadrunners - Information about the Aboriginal people of Australia and their traditional culture. Check the "Twelve Canoes" link in particular.

Class 6 – Olympic Countries – Australia - History, the Australian flag, National Anthem, animals, Sydney Harbour Bridge, sport

ANZAC Day for 2/3 Class - Looking at ANZAC Day and its meaning for me.

For Emily from Michigan who was interested in Australia - A collection of photos taken in different parts of Australia (including animals).

More photos and information on Sydney for Emily - Some photos of Sydney past and present.

Spring has Sprung in Australia – for 4KJ and 4KM - Looks at the seasons of the Southern Hemisphere.

 Australian National Parks near me in answer to ♥Ell♥e♥ and ಢAcacia✄ - Information about Australia as well as some national parks in my area.

Australian Birds – Mostly Close to Home…

Some plant photos taken in my area…

The family dairy farm for someone who loves everything farming

Maoris, Volcanoes and Aboriginal Rock Art (some notes) for Roadrunners and their comment. Includes the Aboriginal flags of Australia, information about paintings and engravings

Australian Animals for Mrs. Watson’s K/1/2/3 and “Our World, Our Numbers” - An assortment of photos, drawings and information.

Koalas and Kangaroos - Two video links I prepared for a class

Australia’s Extinct and Endangered Species – for Katey of Techie Kids

Tasmanian Devils for Christian and Techie Kids

Some More Aussie Animals for Alexis & Techie Kids

 

You Tube Video Clips

These are my own video clips uploaded to my You Tube Channel. Some are already embedded into the above posts but can be viewed here as well...

Eastern Grey Kangaroos

Schools and students have permission to use this video clip for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

The life of "Sapphire" the koala

Schools and students have permission to use this video clip for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Echidna (Spiny Anteater)

Schools and students have permission to use this video clip for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

"Bert" the wombat joey (baby)

Schools and students have permission to use this video clip for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Walking koala from a series of photos

Schools and students have permission to use this video clip for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

The Song of the Lyrebird

Schools and students have permission to use this video clip for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

"Lyrebird Story" by Alexandra Seddon

This video clip may not be copied or distributed in any fashion.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Suzie the koala's baby makes an appearance

Schools and students have permission to use this video clip for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Black-Headed Python Experience

Schools and students have permission to use this video clip for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Potoroo "Daniel"

Schools and students have permission to use this video clip for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Koala encounter with "Blinky" and "Suzie"

Schools and students have permission to use this video clip for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Echidna "Spike" Encounter

Schools and students have permission to use this video clip for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Ringtail Possum "Estelle" Encounter

Schools and students have permission to use this video clip for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Swamp Wallaby "Serena" Encounter

Schools and students have permission to use this video clip for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Emus

Schools and students have permission to use this video clip for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Many of the above animal video clips were filmed at Potoroo Palace . It is a native animal educational sanctuary operated by volunteers and funded by visitor entry fees and donations. Potoroo Palace is a not-for-profit organisation passionate about caring for the Earth. The aims of Potoroo Palace are...

  • To improve the habitats and wellbeing of the native animals already in our care

  • To promote public awareness of their plight in the wild

  • To educate the community about the importance of the conservation of our unique Australian native animals and plants.

At times I have been invited to film their animals.

4 Comments

This post was in response to "Our World, Our Numbers" and a post about the kangaroo and koala.

Australian Animals

After reading the post on Australian animals, I thought I would put together two You Tube clips, one of "Sapphire" the koala and the other on the eastern grey kangaroo. Here are the photos of the stars...

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

 Below are the two videos created for you...

Eastern Grey Kangaroo

Schools and students have permission to use this video clip for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

 

Koala - "Sapphire"

Schools and students have permission to use this video clip for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

For the Our World, Our Numbers post...

Topic 5: Animals

Hello everyone,

After watching the informative video made by Mrs. Watson and her class, I wondered if I could find similar animals found in Australia. We don't have  the same species of animals with one exception, Australia also has killer whales but more about them later.

For each Australian animal I show, you will see I mention one of the 16 animals Mrs. Watson's K/1/2/3's class shared. The Australian animals I share might have similar appearance, similar names, similar food or similar habitat. Some of my drawings were prepared for first time use in this post.

 

1. Platypus (Ornithorhynchus anatinus)

Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Platypus

I don't have a photo I have taken so I prepared this drawing for you.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Class: Mammalia

Order: monotremata (egg- laying mammals)

Like the beaver, the platypus spends much of its time in rivers and streams. It doesn't build dams. Instead it lives in burrows in the banks. It has thick, water-proof fur. It's sometimes called the duck-billed platypus but its "bill" isn't like a duck's bill, its more flexible and is used to search the bottom of streams for grubs and worms. When a specimen was first sent to England, scientists thought it was a hoax made by sewing bits of different animals together.

"Weight varies considerably from 0.7 to 2.4 kg (1.5 to 5.3 lb), with males being larger than females; males average 50 cm (20 in) in total length, while females average 43 cm (17 in)." Wikipedia

Here is a link to a You Tube video of the platypus from National Geographic...

This is not my video clip.

 

2. Humpback Whale (Megaptera novaeangliae)

Reference:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Humpback_whale

Here is a drawing I prepared for another post.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Class: Mammalia

Order: Cetacea

Like the beluga, the humpback is a whale. It can be seen in any of the world's oceans whereas the beluga whale is only found in Arctic waters. Beluga are toothed whales whereas humpback whales are baleen whales. A beluga mainly feeds on fish like the Pacific salmon whereas humpback whales feed on krill (like small shrimp/prawns) and schools of small fish. Visitors to my town can take trips on boats to watch humpback whales on their annual migrations along our coast.

 Fully grown, the males average 13–14 m (43–46 ft). Females are slightly larger at 15–16 m (49–52 ft).

3. The Tasmanian Devil (Sarcophilus harrisii)

Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tasmanian_devil

Again, I didn't have a suitable photo. This drawing was prepared for another post.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Class:Mammalia

Infraclass: Marsupialia  (pouched mammals)

Order: Dasyuromorphia

Comparing an Australian animal to the wolverine was difficult. We don't have any large, strong natural predators in Australia but the Tasmanian devil is a carnivore. It's only the size of a small dog and can only be found in the wild in Tasmania, Australia's most southerly state.

"Males are usually larger than females, having an average head and body length of 652 mm (25.7 in), a 258 mm (10.2 in) tail and an average weight of 8 kg (18 lb). Females have an average head and body length of 570 mm (22 in), a 244 mm (9.6 in) tail and an average weight of 6 kg (13 lb)." Wikipedia

I have a You Tube clip I found on the web. You will see and hear two Tasmanian devils having an argument.

 

This is not my video clip.

 4. Common Brushtail Possum (Trichosurus vulpecula)

Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common_brushtail_possum

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Bournda National Park, N.S.W., Australia

Class: Mammalia

Infraclass: Marsupialia  (pouched mammals)

Order: Diprotodontia

 I chose to compare the brushtail possum to the raccoon because they both don't mind living in urban areas and getting any human food they can find. The one in the photo was seen on a school camp one night. It was watching to see if we would leave any food out.

The common brushtail possum has a head and body length of 32 – 58 cm (12.5in - 23in) with a tail length of 24 – 40 cm (9.5in - 15.5in). It weighs 1.2 - 4.5 kg (2.6lb - 10lb).

 5. Tasmanian Tiger (Thylacinus cynocephalus)

Reference:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tasmanian_tiger

I don't have any photos of a Tasmanian tiger (thylacine) as it is thought to have become extinct in the 1930s. Here is a drawing I prepared.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Here is a link to a You Tube clip showing the last known thylacine.

This is not my video clip.

Class: Mammalia

Infraclass: Marsupialia  (pouched mammals)

Order: Dasyuromorphia

Australia doesn't have any native cats in the wild (there are escaped domestic cats). To choose something like the cougar, I chose the marsupial Tasmanian tiger. It was a nocturnal (nighttime) animal that looked a little like a dog but it was a marsupial and the famales had pouches to carry its young. Like the cougar, the thylacine was carnivorous. It once also roamed mainland Australia with remains of one being found to be over 3,000 years old.

"The mature thylacine ranged from 100 to 130 cm (39 to 51 in) long, plus a tail of around 50 to 65 cm (20 to 26 in). The largest measured specimen was 290 cm (9.5 ft) from nose to tail. Adults stood about 60 cm (24 in) at the shoulder and weighed 20 to 30 kg (40 to 70 lb)." WIkipedia

6. Little Pied Cormorant (Microcarbo melanoleucos)

Reference:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Little_pied_cormorant

 

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Merimbula, N.S.W., Australia

Class: Aves (birds)

Order: Suliformes

Since first seeing a photo of the puffin, I found them fascinating birds. They look a little like penguins but aren't and can fly.  The little pied cormorant has similar feeding habits. It dives under the water looking for small fish or bottom-dwelling crustaceans.

It can measure 56–58 cm (22–23 in).

7. Dingo (Canus Lupus Dingo)

Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dingo

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Class: Mammalia

Order: Carnivora

While Australia does have red foxes, they were only introduced to Australia in the 1800s. There were people who wanted to go fox hunting. The dingo was first thought to have been brought to Australia by Aborigines perhaps 6000 to 10,000 years ago. They are thought to be closely related to grey wolves and dingoes.

Dingoes can be 52 to 60 cm (20 to 24 in) tall at the shoulders and measure 117 to 154 cm (46 to 61 in) from nose to tail tip. The average weight is 13 to 20 kg (29 to 44 lb).

8. Black Swan (Cygnus atratus)

Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_swan

It was a surprise I couldn't find a black swan in my collection of photos so I added a photo of a pair today.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Merimbula, N.S.W., Australia

Class: Aves (birds)

Order: Anseriformes

Black swans can be 110 and 142 centimetres (43 and 56 in) in length and weigh 3.7–9 kilograms (8.2–20 lb).

Australia also has swans. The black swan is an Australian native and is part of the state of Western Australia's coast of arms and flag.

This graphic is in the public domain and was listed in Wikimedia Commons.

9. Tiger Quoll (Dasyurus maculatus)

Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tiger_quoll

Again, I don't have a tiger quoll photo in my collection so here is my attempt at drawing one.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Class: Mammalia

Infraclass: Marsupialia  (pouched mammals)

Order: Dasyuromorphia

Australia doesn't have any native cats  such as the lynx but does have escaped domestic cats in the wild. I chose the quoll because it is also a carnivore. It is an endangered species. Climate change, predation and even poisoning from baiting for feral animals are some of the cause of their decline in the wild.

Quoll males weigh around 3.5 kg (7.7lb) and females around 1.8 kg (4lb).

10. Dromedary Camel (Camelus dromedarius)

Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australian_feral_camel

 This is the scan of a 35mm slide I took near Alice Springs in Central Australia nearly 30 years ago.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Alice Springs, Northern Territory, Australia

Class: Mammalia

Order: Artiodactyla

Australia doesn't have native deer or, for that matter, native camels, so white-tailed deer might only be found in zoos and on deer farms. I chose to add feral (gone wild) camels because they can be seen wandering Australia's deserts. Australia has the largest population of feral camels in the world (estimated around one million in 2009. In the early 1800s, exploring inland Australia's desert regions needed a good means of getting around. Camels were used by some explorers. In the early days of settlement, camels also provided a way goods could be taken over desert regions. They aren't used now, except for tourists as those in the photo. Road, rail and air has replaced them. They cause problems for native wildlife and cattle fencing so the numbers have to be controlled. Many are exported to the Middle East from where they once had come.

Camels can weigh 300 to 600 kg (660 to 1,300 lb).

11. Koala (Phascolarctos cinereus)

Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Koala

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Class: Mammalia

Infraclass: Marsupialia  (pouched mammals)

Order: Diprotodontia

Australia doesn't native bears like the grizzly bear but sometimes the koala is called the koala bear. The grizzly  bear is a placental mammal whereas the koala is a marsupial mammal. The female koala (Suzie) in this photo had a joey (marsupial baby) in her pouch when this photo was taken.

The koala has a body length of 60–85 cm (24–33 in) and weighs 4–15 kg (9–33 lb)

Below is a video I had taken on one of the first times Suzie's baby looked out of her pouch. Like all marsupials, the young are born very small and have to make their way into the pouch where they remain until ready to leave the pouch.

Schools and students have permission to use this video clip for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

12. Diprotodon (Diprotodon optatum)

Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diprotodon

Wikimedia Commons graphic created by Dmitry Bogdanov

This is a Wikimedia Commons graphic by Dmitry Bogdanov.

Class: Mammalia

Infraclass: Marsupialia  (pouched mammals)

Order: Diprotodontia

We don't have any bison native to Australia. There are feral species of water buffalo in the north but I have chosen an Australian megafauna (big animal) example.

Imagine a giant wombat taller than a human at its shoulders. They are thought to have become extinct 28,000 or more years ago. The first Aboriginal people coming to Australia probably saw them but I have only seen fossils and bones of them. It may look a little like a bear but it's a marsupial so females had a pouch for their young.

The diprotodon can be up to 3 metres (10 ft) from nose to tail, standing 2 metres (6.6 ft) tall at the shoulder and weighing up to 2,800 kilograms (6,200 lb).

13. Short-beaked Echidna or Spiny Anteater (Tachyglossus aculeatus)

Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Short-beaked_Echidna

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Class: Mammalia

Order: monotremata (egg- laying mammals)

You can see why I chose to compare the porcupine with an echidna. They both have a spiny defence. With the platypus I showed as number 1, the different species of echidna and the platypus are the world's only surviving species of monotremes, i.e. egg laying mammals. The short-beaked echidna in the photo is common in most areas of Australia and I have even found one in my garden.

The short-beaked echdina can 30 to 45 cm (12 to 18 in) in length, with 75 mm (3 in) of snout, and weigh between 2 and 5 kg (4.4 and 11 lb).

Below is a video clip of an echidna.

Schools and students have permission to use this video clip for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

14. Killer Whale (Orcinus Orca)

Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Killer_whale

We also have orcas here in Australia's water. They are widespread throughout the world's oceans and seas. Below is a photo of an orca skeleton to be seen inside the Eden Killer Whale Museum about 20km from my town. The skeleton is of Old Tom. After you look at his photo, I will tell you why he is locally famous.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Eden Whaling Museum, Eden, N.S.W., Australia

Class: Mammalia

Order: Cetacea

Whaling was banned in Australian in 1979. The town of Eden was once a whaling town. Whales were hunted as they made their way along our coast. It's at Eden a strange relationship began between the whalers and a pod of killer whales began. The whales began helping the whalers by herding other whales (baleen whales such as the humpback) into Twofold Bay. The killer whale thought to be the pod leader, Old Tom, would come to alert the whalers. The whalers would head out in their boats with Old Tom sometimes taking hold of a rope and towing a boat out.

Why would killer whales do this?

Killer whales naturally hunt other whales along our coastline but it can be an effort for them. Their reward was the whale tongue and lips. The whalers would use most of the whale but would throw the tongue and lips to the killer whales. The tongue and lips were favourites of the orcas. Old Tom died in 1930, his skeleton now in the Eden Killer Whale Museum. His mouth shows the wear caused by towing the boats.

Killer whale males typically range from 6 to 8 metres (20 to 26 ft) long and weigh in excess of 6 tonnes (5.9 tons). Females are smaller.

15. Tawny Frogmouth (Podargus strigoides)

Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tawny_Frogmouth

Australia has a number of native owl species but the snowy owl isn't one of them. I could have chosen an owl but I instead chose the tawny frogmouth. It is a bird sometimes mistaken for an owl and one I have seen while hiking.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Class: Aves (birds)

Order: Caprimulgiformes

(Owls are in the order Strigiformes.)

Like owls, the tawny frogmouth hunts at night. Unlike owls, they catch their prey with their beaks. When scared, they will stand perfectly still with their heads pointing upwards in the hope their camouflage will protect them. While I have seen them doing this, the pictured tawny frogmouth simply opened its eyes, looked at me and didn't seem to worry I was nearby.

They can grow to 35–53 cm (14–21 in) long and can weigh up to 680 grams (1.5 lbs).

16. Red-bellied Black Snake (Pseudechis porphyriacus)

Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red-bellied_black_snake

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Wolumla, N.S.W., Australia

Class: Reptilia

Order: Squamata

Like the rattlesnake, the red-bellied black snake is poisonous. The black snake, or any other Australian snake, doesn't have a rattle in the tail. I have seen this species a number of times when hiking but it's not a very aggressive snake and generally is more interested in getting away from people.

They can grow to 1.5m to 2.0m (5ft to 6ft 9inches).

13 Comments

This post was one off my 100th Extended Comment post. As the 99th post, the school will be receiving a copy of “Wombat’s Secret” book, two small souvenirs from Potoroo Palace (where I have taken many animal photos) and some Australian animal postcards.

Dear Riley,

Like you, I love animals and nature. I have many photos from insects and other small creatures up to large animals.

All of the photos appearing on this post were taken by me. Schools and students have permission to use them for non-commercial purposes. This means I am letting schools and students use these photos in their school work.

I have created a post for you so I can re-show a number of animal pictures appearing in assorted posts on this blog...

This is a photo of a female swamp wallaby (marsupial mammal). She thought I might have some food for her. The photo is one of my top favourites because she seems to be smiling at me. 🙂

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Eastern Grey Kangaroo (marsupial mammal). He stood nearly 6 ft (175cm) tall.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Bournda National Park, N.S.W., Australia

"Blinky" is a male koala (marsupial mammal) living at a local animal sanctuary named Potoroo Palace.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Suzie is Potoroo Palace's female koala (marsupial mammal). You can see females have a much whiter front than males.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Leaf curling spider (arachnid). You can see its legs at one end of the leaf.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Bournda National Park, N.S.W., Australia

If we take the time to look,  spiders can be beautiful.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Bournda National Park, N.S.W., Australia

This painted lady butterfly (Lepidoptera) was trying to warm itself one morning.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Bournda National Park, N.S.W., Australia

The blue-tongued skink (lizard) isn't fast moving. I have found them in my garden.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Bournda National Park, N.S.W., Australia

The kookaburra whose call sounds like it's laughing.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Magpies can sometimes be aggressive. Although most don't, some birds swoop down on people and animals they think are threats. This one didn't seem to mind me taking a photo.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Merimbula, N.S.W., Australia

Australian Wood Duck - One of our prettiest native ducks, this is a male

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Corellas - Corellas can arrive in large flocks but in this case three arrived on one of my trees

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Merimbula, N.S.W., Australia

Crimson Rosella - Their call is like a single not from a piccolo

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Emu - not quite as large as an ostrich. Did you know the male ostrich looks after the young, not the female?

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Wombat (marsupial mammal) - They are not normally out in the day. They prefer dusk and night but I saw this guy while hiking one day.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Yellowpinch, N.S.W., Australia

The black-headed python is non-poisonous.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Alexandra, a volunteer at Potoroo Palace, hows visitors "Olivia" the olive python. Being a python, Olivia is non-poisonous. On my hikes, I have seen three very poisonous snake, the red-bellied black snake, the brown snake, and the tiger snake but I don't have any photos at this time.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Rainbow Lorikeet - These birds live on flower nectar. With such a high sugar diet, they are very noisy and a little crazy when they visit my garden.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Echidna or spiny ant eater (Monotreme mammal) - Like the platypus, the females lay eggs from which the young hatch. The mother's have glands on their skin that can secrete milk. Just like all mammals, the young have milk to drink. I once found one of these guys in my garden and have seen them a number of time in the wild.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

Location: Potoroo Palace, N.S.W., Australia

Mammals are divided into three groups.

Monotremes - such as echidna and platypus - are egg laying mammals

Marsupials - kangaroos, wallabies, koalas, wombats and many others -  they are the pouched animals. Marsupials are born very small and make their way into the mother's pouch where they feed and grow until large enough to come outside.

Placentals - This group includes animals like cows, goats, horses, pigs, apes, monkeys and humans