VIDEO: Swimming echidna proves these animals love to play

By Australian Geographic 19 July 2017
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Ashley Hallam captured this footage of an echidna swimming along the Swan River in Tasmania, seemingly using its nose as a snorkel.

A SWIMMING echidna may seem unusual to some, but experts have assured us it’s actually pretty normal.

Peggy Rismiller, an expert on echidnas for almost 30 years, explained that echidnas may take a swim for leisurely purposes.

“Sometimes they are just having fun. Yes, we do see ‘play’ in echidnas. They have been around for 110 million years and there is nothing new under the sun.”

However, Peggy has seen her fair share of concerned onlookers.

“Through our many years of collecting echidna sightings from around Australia, we have multiple records from various places along the Great Ocean Road of swimming echidnas.

“There are stories about people ‘rescuing’ swimming echidnas only to have them head straight back out into the water.

“I often get reports from locals who see echidnas swimming across their dams, when it could have easily walked around.”