Constantly surprising creatures

I had never thought of echidnas as climbing creatures. I had seen them ‘walk’ up banks so they looked as if they were climbing, but this one was indisputably climbing up a fence post stay.

Definitely above ground, it was sticking its nose in under the loose bark, flipping it aside and, I assume, finding lunch. It only stopped where the bark ended.

But then this echidna has surprised me before in that its spines are so light-coloured — this is The Blonde.

But I also have an Eastern Rednecked wallaby (left) and young visiting here at present that both have very fair haunches, not red or grey. Blonde highlights?

Not to be outdone, another less glamorous but perhaps more adventurous wallaby was spotted (right) climbing on the rocks to reach the Chinese Jasmine. Perhaps this is the one who likes to climb up my steps?

6 thoughts on “Constantly surprising creatures”

  1. Hi Aime,
    What a lovely long comment! I really enjoyed reading it. Sounds like we are both happily crazy in appreciating critters other than human so much. And I agree re the worrying ways in which our actions can unwittingly cause harm, like the bird netting.
    Thanks Aime.

  2. Back in ’96, I did something akin to what you did in the 70’s. I got thoroughly sick of nosy neighbours and went “bush.” Although my home is much more conventional than yours in construction design, I did insist that as much of it as possible be built by myself. Wow! What a learning curve!!

    Originally, although an animal lover, I never intended my place to be an animal refuge as I wouldn’t have believed so many were living in this terribly rough ex gold mining area which is practically devoid of top soil and over-run by poorly regenerated and stunted native vegetation, but by and by the “locals” turned up and many have now made my place a safe haven. The list is long, but you know what I mean 🙂

    But in relation to climbing Echidnas, I once discovered one not far from the house and down a steeply sided square mine shaft. The shaft wasn’t very deep, but I believed the poor creature had fallen in and it was possible by the frantic way it moved, that it might may be unable to get out. Not wanting to interfere with the native wildlife, I left for him/her for several hours, but on my return the Echidna was still down the shaft and looking distressed (what does a distressed Echidna look like??) so I placed a length of old branch down the shaft on an angle. I’ve seen how fast an Echidna can move, so I stood back a little. Nothing happened. I peered over the side of the shaft and he/she was still trying to drive it’s nose into every bit of earth that looked like it might give, so I left and came back just on dusk. To my delight, the piece of branch had been moved and the Echidna gone. I never saw him or any other Echidna again. I’ve since thought…… “That’s gratitude for you!”

    I rescued several creatures since living out here and have also learned some hard and sad lessons, like never leave plastic bird netting lying around, even the “bird friendly” stuff. Snakes try to go through it, again and again until they become hopelessly entangled. I’d heard about this from an old bushie who’s neighbour used the method to catch snakes that had invaded his home, but didn’t really believe it until I found what remained of a snake caught up in a bit of dangling bird netting around the apple tree. I’d rather snakes stay away from me, or at least let me know they’re there, but I was deeply saddened by that event, just as much as when I pulled a drowned Blue Tongue out of a bath full of water in the garden. I hoped for the best, but the amount of water that poured from the hapless creature told me instantly to give up on any attempt at resuscitation. Since then, I’ve continued to make the surrounding area as animal friendly as possible.

    Anyway, sorry for the long post. It’s just so refreshing to find there is someone else apart from me who lives in a similar fashion. Perhaps, as I’m sure most of my friends think, I’m not a crazy woman after all.

  3. I got a great close-up shot of an Echidna’s tail the other day…very interesting. I had never had a good look at their asses before!

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