lizbrownlee – poet

Poems, animal info, extraordinary women, my books!

Q is for Quokka

david burton

Quokka by David Burton on Flikr.

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I do love all animals, but there is something about this little marsupial that makes me smile and want to scoop it up and cuddle it silly.

It is a small macropod, the same family as kangaroos and wallabies, and it jumps.

It is about the size of a domestic cat and it is nocturnal and herbivorous – quokkas have no fear of tourists and approach them to exploit the easy food that comes with them. Which is not doing it any good. Fines have been set in place to stop tourists handling and feeding them.

Quokkas eat grasses, seeds and roots and they swallow them like a ruminant and regurgitate to chew the cud later – so the sorts of food given by humans will upset their highly specialised digestion.

For instance, quokkas can survive without water – if it is there they drink it, but can go months without a drink by reusing some of their waste products.

Another unusual thing about them is that they can climb trees up to 1.5 m.

Black tulip

Hard to resist. Photo by Blacktulip on Flikr.

Introduced species such as cats, dogs and foxes, and dingoes have decimated the quokka on the mainland, and they now live mostly on two offshore islands that are free of predators.

They are classified as Vulnerable by the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.

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Images © photographers as specified above.

Poem © Liz Brownlee

If you would like to blog-hop to the next A-Z Challenge blog, please click here.

If you’d like to read about or buy my book, Animal Magic, full of animal poems and fascinating facts, click here.

14 Comments

  1. I can’t believe I’d never heard of a Quokka before. I thought I knew all the cute, fuzzy animals. But now that I’ve seen one, I WANT ONE!!!!!! Man, they sure are adorable!

    Hope you’re having fun with the A to Z challenge,
    Jocelyn

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  2. I’ve never heard of a Quokka either! What a cute animal.

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  3. Oh that’s so sad Liz, I’d struggle to resist a cuddle too x

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  4. Haven’t heard of these but they are adorable. What an interesting little critter. Visiting from the A to Z.
    http://yeakleyjones.blogspot.com/

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    • Hello! I’d never heard of them before, either!

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    • Dear wordstock, I have visited your blog, what an incredible story, but I can’t comment as it is the type of Blogger blog that won’t let me, I don’t know why! Comments just disappear. Can’t even ‘like’. but it’s extraordinary, and good luck!

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  5. Adorable little Creature and there is something about Marsupials and their pouches that is so endearing #AtoZchallenge ☮Peace ☮ ღ ONE ℒℴνℯ ღ ☼ Light ☼ visiting from http://4covert2overt.blogspot.com/

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    • There certainly is!

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    • Hi Maria – I’ve been in to look at your book and your blog, and can tell you I have many quirks! Sadly your blog too is one I can’t comment on, the Google comment box flashes up and then disappears, no matter how many times I try, think we are incompatible!

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  6. Liz

    That second photo looks like a squirrel with a thin tail! I like your seventh line – funny and clever!

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    • Thank you, Liz! He’s actually rather a chubby little thing.

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  7. OMG-never heard of them and they are cute looking but see how they would be scrumptious to the cat. I am surprized Disney hasn’t made a show with this animal as a sidekick

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    • Probably don’t know about them! Let’s hope it stays that way, the last thing they need is loads more tourists feeding them biscuits!

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  8. I first found out about quokkas several years ago when watching the tv series Billy Connolly did in Australia – he went to one of the islands where they live. Such cute little things, I just wanted to go straight there and cuddle them all – and yes, I want one of my own! 🙂

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