Short-beaked Echidna

Photo(s): 

Short-beaked Echidna

Tachyglossus aculeatus


Use their long, sticky tongue to catch food. Digs for food at the base of rotting stumps or around ant nests. Clues to look for are semi circular diggings on the ground or rotting fallen timber that has been torn apart. Echidna scats can have lots of soil or sand in them as soil also sticks to their tongues when they lick up insects. Tough external skeletons of insects can also be seen in their droppings. Females lay a single egg in a small backward facing 'pouch'. The young echidna stays with their mother for about a year. 


Details Description
Type
Mammal
Group
Monotreme
Other Common Names
Spiny Anteater
Identifying Characteristics

Rounded body with dark brown fur, covered in long sharp spines. Spines yellow-cream with black tips. Long pointed snout. Long sharp claws. Body up to 45 cm.

Distinctive Markings

Long snout, long spines on back and sides of body.

Diet

Carnivore. Eats mainly ants and termites but also other small invertebrates.

Habitat

Range of areas, including open forest and woodlands.

Native Status
Native to Australia
Taxonomy
Phylum
Chordata
Class
Mammalia
Order
Monotremata
Family
Tachyglossidae
Genus
Tachyglossus
Species
aculeatus
Throughout Australia, including across Victoria.

Distribution maps indicate current and historic locations where species have been sighted.

Source: Atlas of Living Australia

Conservation Status
DEPI Advisory List
Not listed
FFG Act
Not listed
EPBC Act
Not listed

The conservation status of species is listed within Victoria and Australia.

The Department of Environment and Primary Industry (DEPI) Advisory List consists of non-statutory advisory lists of rare or threatened flora and fauna within Victoria.

The Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988 (FFG Act) lists threatened species in Victoria. Under the Act, an Action Statement is produced for each listed species.

The Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act) is the Australian Government’s key piece of environmental legislation, listing nationally threatened native species and ecological communities.