Marsupial mole

Notoryctes typhlops

TAXONOMY

Notoryctes typhlops (Stirling, 1889), Indracowrie, Northern Territory, Australia.

OTHER COMMON NAMES

English: Greater marsupial mole; French: Taupe marsupiale; German: Großer Beutelmull; Spanish: Topo marsupial.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS Head-body 3.5-7 in (9-18 cm); tail about 1 in (2.5 cm); weight 1.2-2.5 oz (35-70 g). Long, flattish body with short tail, very short, stout legs, and spade-like front feet; fur is silky and pale blond; no visible eyes or ears, nose has flat, callused shield; female has backward opening pouch with two teats.

DISTRIBUTION

Midwestern Australia, including central Western Australia, southern Northern Territories, and northwestern South Australia.

HABITAT

Sandy desert.

BEHAVIOR

Lives alone; burrows in loose sand using swimming action, but creates no persistent burrow system, surfaces very occasionally.

FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET

Mostly insect larvae.

REPRODUCTIVE BIOLOGY Nothing is known.

CONSERVATION STATUS

Endangered.

SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS None known. ♦

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