SPECIES: Myrmecobius fasciatus — Numbat
Let’s see – where to begin. Numbats are just too cute and too quirky, there is simply too much to cover! Measuring around 40cm in length – and that’s including the cute bushy tail – and with a sticky tongue that rolls out to be roughly half the length of itself – Numbats can hoover around 20,000 termites in a day.
The stripes on a Numbat – much like a fingerprint – are unique to each individual. Numbats are the closest living relative to the now extinct Thylacine (or Tasmanian Tiger). They are one of only two Australian diurnal mammals (active during the day) and sadly, are confined to only two wild populations. The Numbat is the state faunal emblem of WA and even has its own ‘day’, World Numbat Day, celebrated on the first Saturday in November each year, promoting the plight of this iconic native mammal.
In 2017 and completed in 2019, FAME, in conjunction with the Australian Government, the Threatened Species Commissioner and the WA Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions, provided funding for a ground-breaking project around training detector dogs for cat detection as a method to save the last wild population of Numbats in the Dryandra Woodland in WA.
Our work is critically important and we have shown that together we can make a difference. Visit www.fame.org.au to donate or find out more.
Photo: John Lawson