The Kowari is a carnivore with a pouch attached to its stomach that lives in Australia. Grazing by domesticated animals has reduced their numbers so much that they are in danger of extinction.
Body length: Male 14-18cm / emale 13.5-16cm
Tail length: Male 11-14cm / Female 11-13cm
Weight: Male 85-140kg / Female 70-105kg
(Source: Doubutsu Sekai-isan* Red Data Animals Kodansha) (*World Animal Heritage)
The Kowari lives in the dry grasslands and deserts in the middle of the Australian continent.
They are carnivorous (meat eaters) and thus capture and eat small rats, lizards, birds, insects and other small animals.
The mother raises her babies in her pouch, just like other Australian mammals. The Kowari flaps its large squirrel-like tail to communicate with other Kowaris.
A rat that eats other rats?
The Kowari lives in the dry grasslands and deserts of Australia. They dig holes to hide in during the afternoon as they are a nocturnal animal. Although the Kowari looks similar to a squirrel or rat, it is an entirely different animal. In fact, the carnivorous Kowari feeds on rats. They use their fore legs to subdue their prey, which includes lizards, birds, and rats, and use their sharp teeth to make the final kill.
Declining numbers due to grazing by domesticated animals.
Domesticated animals put out to pasture are causing problems for the Kowari. It is not the food that is at stake, as domesticated cattle and sheep only eat grass. Rather, the problem is how the grazing changes the Kowari's habitat, which causes their number to decline. Their habitats are disappearing with the construction of roads and towns, putting the Kowari in even greater danger of extinction.
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