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Common Wombat

Vombatus ursinus

Class: Mammalia
Lifespan: Up to 25 years        
Diet: Herbivore      
Weight: Up to 39kg
Height: Up to 115cm
Speed: Up to 40km/h                            
Reproduction: Live birth
Status: Not listed

Australia is home to all three wombat species. Common wombats (also known as bare-nosed wombats) can be identified from their hairy-nosed relatives by their large, naked nose, small ears and coarser brown fur.

Wombats are marsupials, which mean females give birth to underdeveloped young known as joeys. Joeys climb into the mother’s pouch, where they attach to a teat and drink milk. Wombat pouches face backwards so that the joeys are protected from soil when the mother is digging. Joeys leave the pouch for good at approximately 10 months age.

Wombats leave their cubed-shaped scats (poo) around burrows, on logs and rocks as a way of marking their territory. Males can identify when a female is most fertile by the smell of their scats. Wombats can also protect their territory, and themselves, by crushing intruding predators against the ceiling of their burrows using a bony plate on the back of their bottoms.

Wombat teeth are ‘rootless’ which means the same set of teeth continue to grow for the life of the animal.