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Wombats: Vombatidae

Physical Characteristics, Behavior And Reproduction, Conservation Status, Common Wombat (vombatus Ursinus): Species AccountGEOGRAPHIC RANGE, HABITAT, DIET, WOMBATS AND PEOPLE


Wombats live in southeastern Australia. The common wombat is fairly widespread and can be found in parts of New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, and Tasmania. The northern hairy-nosed wombat lives only in one place in Queensland, and the southern hairy-nosed wombat lives in a small area along the south central coast of Australia.

Wombats live under the ground in open grassland, open woodlands, and dry, shrubby, forested areas. They prefer areas where the ground is soft enough to dig extensive burrows.

Wombats are herbivores, and eat only plants. They mainly eat native grasses, but will also eat roots, bark, and moss. They graze above ground at night and may travel up to 1.8 miles (3 kilometers) each night looking for food. Because the food they eat is high in fiber and hard to digest, it is held in their digestive system for up to seventy hours in order to break down the fiber and release the nutrients.

Although wombats have no commercial value, they are considered a symbol of Australia. There are active foster care programs for raising orphaned wombats. However, farmers sometimes see wombats as pests, because their tunnels allow rabbits to pass under rabbit fences and destroy crops. For this reason they are sometimes shot.

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Animal Life ResourceMammals