Numbat

ANIMAL:
Numbat Myrmecobius fasciatus

Type of Animal:
Dasyuromorph

Habitat:
Eucalypt-dominated areas, woodlands, forests, spinifex sandplains, open areas near shrub cover, spinifex grassland, semiarid/arid grassland, shrubland, sand dune terrain, Mediterranean scrub, savanna, desert

Location(s):
Once found throughout southern Australia, from Western Australia to W New South Wales. Now only found in small pockets of former range.

Appearance:
Small creature w/ noticeable long bushy tail, soft gray to reddish-brown to rusty orange coloration w/ prominent striping on back, finely pointed snout, small round-tipped ears, & cream/light gray underside

Food/Diet:
Termites & ants

Status in Wild:
Endangered

Conservation:
Reintroductions into areas of former range. Numbat Recovery Team established in 1993. Perth Zoo established breeding/reintroduction program in 1987 (only zoo in world captive breeding numbats).

Lifestyle:
Solitary

Additional Info:

Called:
Male
Female
Young: Joey
Group: Solitary
 
Weight:
Male: 0.89-1.65 lbs
Female: 0.45-1.425 lbs

Gestation:
2 weeks 

Life Span:
5 years

Height:
Male: 7 in
Female: 5 in

Body Length:
Male: 8.7-11.4 in
Female: 7.9-10.5 in
Young: 3 in

Tail Length:
4.7-8.2 in, same for both sexes

Main predators are foxes, cats, dingos, dogs, predatory birds, snakes, & monitor lizards.
 
Endangered due to habitat fragmentation/loss & introduced predators (cats/foxes/dogs).
 
Active during the day (diurnal).
 
Also called noombat, walpurti, banded anteater, & marsupial anteater.
 
Breed in February & March, w/ females producing 1 litter averaging 4 joeys a year.
 
Primarily uses scent to find food.
 
Highest visual acuity of any marsupial.
 
Numbat joeys stay attached to mom for 5-6 months & leave mom at 10-12 months old.
 
Burrows/logs/tree hollows very important to these animals.
 
Only member of family Myrmecobiidae.
 
These animals less active in cooler months, sometimes sleeping for 15 hours a day.
 
Strong-clawed forefeet come in handy for digging.
 
Long sticky tongues come in handy for eating termites.
 
Females mature at a year old, males mature at 2 years old.

Fun Fact(s):
They can run almost 20 mph if disturbed.
 
Faunal emblem of Western Australia.
 
These marsupials can easily eat 20,000 termites a day.
 
Only marsupial known to lack pouch, w/ joeys fusing to nipples & clinging to mom.
 
1st became known to Europeans in 1831.

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