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Tasmanian Devil

he Tasmanian devil (Sarcophilus harrisii

On the island of Tasmania, just off the coast of Australia, lives the largest carnivorous marsupial that has a fierce reputation. The Tazmanian devil is small but feisty for its size. This little animal once inspired fear in the early settlers that arrived in Tazmania long ago with the angry, shrieking, devilish growls they make. Until the animals were sighted, Tazmanian Devils were thought to be roaring monsters in the forest.

Tasmanian devils, at one time, existed on the Australian mainland but were wiped out by the settlers who arrived there. As a result, these creatures only lived in great numbers on the island of Tasmania. Recently, however, they have been reintroduced to the Australian mainland. 


TASMANIAN DEVIL sarcophilus harrisi, ADU

With a fantastic sense of smell, they can sniff out dead animals from a great distance to feast on. They do scavenge most of their food. On occasion, they may take down a wallaby or wombat. They also have a crushing bite that could break bones. Their head is a bit disproportionate to their body. It may seem awkward to many. In reality, this plays a broad role in the bite force of Tasmanian Devils. Large and powerful jaw muscles allow them to inflict devastating bites and tear flesh from dead animals. The animal is nocturnal and feeds at night, while during the day, they sleep in burrows or rock formations.

Sharing is not the most excellent quality of Tasmanian Devils. When tussling breaks out, they give off their piercing growls and display fierce behavior against each other that gave them their name.   

Their Young

Since they are marsupials, they carry their young in a special pouch. When they are old enough to leave the pouch, the mother allows them to travel on her back. The sad reality is that the mother only has only four teats for the young to suckle from. More than four babies can be born. This means that not all will survive to adulthood. Competition for survival among infant Tasmanian devils is unavoidable. Some will be pushed away and die of hunger soon after. It is a tough beginning for the Tasmanian Devil, yet they still manage to survive.

As mentioned before, Tasmanian devils are marsupials. Even though it may not look like it, they are indeed related to the kangaroo, a wallaby, and the multitude of other marsupials that thrive on the Australian mainland.

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