VIDEO: sanctuary welcomes adorable echidna puggle
In the video you can see the echidna puggles teeny-tiny spikes coming through.
THE CURRUMBIN Wildlife Sanctuary's famous echinda Piggiebillah has given birth to a gorgeous echidna puggle. But one echinda keeper at the sanctuary tells Australian Geographic the birth wasn't all smooth sailing.
"We didn’t know that Piggibillah was pregnant, the first sign is when we witnessed her giving birth. It is highly unusual for an Echidna to be giving birth during the day and in the middle of their enclosure," said Lauren, one of the park's keepers. "It is the first time we have witnessed a birth at Currumbin Widlife Sanctuary and we would assume it has been seen only a few times anywhere else, if at all."
Despite the echidna puggles unusual entry into the world, Lauren said the puggle is happy and healthy. "Piggiebillah is a very tiny adult but she has managed to have the largest/fastest growing puggle we have had at Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary so far. She is very attentive to her little one and is feeding it well. During lactation, she gets double the food she would usually have and this helps her to produce the high fat milk which the puggle drinks."
The puggle with stay in its mother's pouch for up to 8-9 months old, after which Lauren said they'll be moved to a housed off-display by itself whilst it learns to eat solid food.
As for a name, Lauren said that they're undecided. "We haven’t named the puggle yet, the mother, Piggiebillah is named after the aboriginal dreamtime story about how the Echidna got it spines, so we are thinking about using another aboriginal name for the little one."