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Marsupial Mole

The Marsupial Mole is an animal that very little is known about.  Although there are often said to be two species; the Southern Marsupial Mole, Notoryctes typhlops and a northern species, Notoryctes caurinus, these are similar.

We do not even know how genuinely separate these species are.

Desert

The Marsupial Moles that are around today live in sandy deserts and can effectively swim through the soft sand.  They eat insects, worms and invertebrates as their main food, but will eat things like small lizards.  The Marsupial Moles are only about 12 centimetres (4 inches) long.

Appearance

They are virtually blind and nearly deaf.  Apparently they have excellent senses of smell and touch.

Ancient Marsupial Moles

Fossils of animals looking very like this one have been found in areas that definitely were not desert like when the animals were around.  The Marsupial Mole may have evolved in forests where they would have moved through the leaf litter etc. under the trees.

Moles

The Marsupial Mole got its common name from its strong similarity to the placental Moles.  This was because the British were familiar with the placental Moles.  It certainly does not imply that the Marsupial Mole is in inferior to their placental look a likes.

Sources

http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/threatened/publications/south-mole.html

http://www.nt.gov.au/nreta/wildlife/animals/threatened/pdf/mammals/southern_marsupial_mole_vu.pdf

http://www.marsupialsociety.org/m_mole.html

http://www.giveusahome.co.uk/australian/mole.htm

http://bird.net.au/bird/index.php?title=Marsupial_mole

http://www.publish.csiro.au/?act=view_file&file_id=AM00115.pdf