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Rare Echidna Puggle Emerges at Taronga Zoo Sydney

Posted By : The Animal Facts Editorial Team

Date: May 8, 2021 1:30 am

Echidna Puggle Taronga Zoo

A keeper holds the now 7 month old short-beaked echidna puggle which has been born at Taronga Zoo Sydney

Photo Credit: Taronga Zoo Sydney

Taronga Zoo Sydney have announced the birth of a short-beaked echidna puggle, a rare occurrence in zoos. Mother Gunyi gave birth to the puggle which is now 7 months old and is beginning to resemble a small version of an adult.

Short-beaked echidnas are strange among mammals as they lay an egg from which the young hatch. Echidnas are one of the two mammals to do this (the other being the platypus).

Echidna Puggle Taronga Zoo

The short-beaked echidna puggle which has been born at Taronga Zoo Sydney hangs out of mom's pouch when it was younger.

Photo Credit: Taronga Zoo Sydney

Echidnas are similar to marsupials in that their young is raised in what resembles a pouch. It is not quite a pouch though. Instead it is two-contracting muscles in their abdomen which form a pouch-like fold.

Keepers have not yet been able to determine the gender of the puggle. As yet a name has not been decided. Once the gender is determined keepers will call on the help of the generous donors which have played a role in establishing the echidna breeding facility at Taronga Zoo Sydney.

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Taronga Zoo Sydney established their echidna breeding facility to provide the mothers and newborns the privacy they need to thrive. Echidnas are a challenging species to breed as they have complex courtship rituals.

Since the opening of the echidna breeding facility Taronga Zoo Sydney have bred 10 puggles.

Currently the puggle is shy and learning how to dig and forage. In a few months time the puggle will leave the breeding facility and join the other echidnas on display.

Echidna Puggle Taronga Zoo

A keeper holds the now 7 month old short-beaked echidna puggle which has been born at Taronga Zoo Sydney

Photo Credit: Taronga Zoo Sydney

Learn more about Short-Beaked Echidnas here – Short-Beaked Echidna Fact File | The Animal Facts

Learn more about the Taronga Zoo Sydney on their website – Taronga Zoo Sydney

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