Wombats

1          Introduction

There are three species of wombat. All are medium sized, burrowing, grazing marsupials. The common wombat (Vombatus ursinus) is found in a narrow coastal belt stretching from south-eastern Queensland into New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania and south-eastern South Australia. Although predominantly solitary it will share burrows and each wombat utilises multiple burrows. Home range varies from five to 23 hectares. Common wombats weigh between 22 and 39 kg.

The southern hairy-nosed wombat (Lasiorhinus latifrons) is found in semi-arid regions (annual rainfall of 200-500 mm) of South Australia and eastern Western Australia. It constructs extensive burrow systems to form large warrens. Unlike the common wombat it is communal, each warren containing five to ten wombats. Weight is from 19 to 32 kg.

The northern hairy-nosed wombat (Lasiorhinus krefftii) is Australia’s most endangered mammal, approximately 70 of them are found in Epping Forest in central Queensland. It occupies a burrow system like the southern hairy-nosed wombat each occupied by up to ten wombats. Despite this they tend to avoid each other and spend most of their time alone. Body weight ranges from 27 to 33 kg for males and 30 to 35 kg for females.


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