How to Recognize a Marsupial

It is well known that kangaroos carry their young in their pouches, but did you know they are not the only animals to do so? In fact, all marsupials carry their young in pouches.

Most marsupials are specialist species, which means they are more likely to become endangered if their habitat changes because they live in a specific climate and environment. Because of this, climate change could affect marsupials drastically.

Koalas are marsupials. They have a very particular diet: eucalyptus leaves, and rely on these leaves for both nutrients and water. Koalas have long, sharp claws to help them climb trees, where they spend most of their lives.

Marsupial moles have golden fur, long sharp claws and a flat shield on their head. They live underground and can burrow up to eight feet deep. As underground critters, their diet is based on insects.

Tasmanian devils also are marsupials. They live on an island off the coast of Australia called Tasmania, which makes them very isolated. Tasmanian devils are roughly the size of a small dog. Their strong teeth and claws may look intimidating, but they tend to scavenge for rotting flesh and small animals rather than hunt. Like all marsupials, they have pouches, but only during breeding season. Once breeding season is over, their pouches close.

Koalas, marsupial moles, and Tasmanian devils are just a few of many marsupials that exist. There are many more kinds in Australia and New Guinea, and all are equally as interesting.

Marsupials are some of the most special and unique animals in the world.

[Source: Simpson Street Free Press Archives ]

Great article, Jessica. I enjoyed reading this. Keep up the good work!! – James Kramer , Monona, WI (2015-06-18 14:54)