Wild Fact #583 – Dig a Little Deeper – Marsupial Moles

Wild Fact #583 – Dig a Little Deeper – Marsupial Moles

Photo by Bartus Malec (Wikimedia)

It has been awhile since we have talked about a marsupial so I figured today would be a great day to look at a bizarre marsupial.  No, the Marsupial Mole may not be as famous as the Kangaroo but they should be.  As you might expect these rare animals are found in the deserts of Western Australia.  Is it just me or does it seem like every animal in Australia is a marsupial? Like other moles the Marsupial Mole spends most of their time underground rarely coming to the surface.  This might make it tough to spot them but we will give it a shot.  You up for the challenge?

When you live underground, you really don’t have much need for eyes and ears.  And as such the Marsupial Mole is blind since their eyes are simply lenses underneath their skin.  Similarly, their hearing probably isn’t the greatest since they just have tiny holes underneath their fur.  Yup, they don’t actually have ears.  It is a good thing they don’t have eyes because they would have a heck of a time keeping their glasses on their face without ears.

Their lack of eyes and ears is neat but not that uncommon among animals spending most of their time underground.  You know what is different than those other underground animals, though?  Of course you do!  It is their pouch.  How in the world do these little moles have a pouch?  Well for starters their pouch faces backwards so it doesn’t fill up with sand.  Evolution is pretty impressive isn’t it?  As well, they can only carry two young in their pouch at a time.  This is pretty intelligent too since it would be tough lugging a bunch of kids around as you are digging tunnels.

Marsupial Mole Skeleton (Photo by Cliff - Wikimedia)

Speaking of digging tunnels, the Marsupial Mole likes to leave the land the way that they found it.  You see, they will actually fill their tunnels in behind them as they move forward.  You would never be able to tell that a Marsupial Mole just burrowed by you.  Of course, this doesn’t really give the mole much of an escape route, does it?

Marsupial Mole Fast Fact – Have you ever wondered what an animal that lives underground in a desert eats? Like other ground dwellers they feast on beetle larvae and little worms.  Not the greatest diet but it seems to work for this particular mole.

Well I think we dug deep enough into the lives of the Marsupial Moles for one day.  Make sure you come back tomorrow for another fun-filled fact.


    • Avatar
      Nathan April 13, 2011

      Hi Carmen,

      They don’t tend to come to the surface too often but they will. Usually after a big rain, they come to the surface so this is your best chance to see them.

  1. Avatar
    anml_lvr April 13, 2011

    Hey Nathan!!!!

    I am sooooo sorry! I haven’t been to your blog in forever! I’m a sophomore now in high school and I always have a LOT of homework! So therefore, no time for blogger friends I’m afraid!

    But this creature is very interesting I have to say. I’ll try to come back and visit soon!

  2. Avatar
    kanjiruminamoto November 08, 2011

    Hi Nathan! I want to introduce the Pink Fairy Armadillo that I saw in Discovery,
    It is a Sand Swimmer like the Marsupial mole, they are so Cute!!

    • Avatar
      Nathan November 09, 2011

      The Pink Fairy Armadillo is definitely an interesting animal. I believe there is actually a Wild Fact on this particular creature.

      Thanks for the suggestions. I do appreciate the animal recommendations.

  3. Avatar
    tyler February 02, 2012

    what does marsupial moles eat

    • Avatar
      Nathan February 07, 2012

      Hey Tyler,

      Marsupial Moles are insectivores and tend to predominately feed on larvae of beetles and some moths.

      Thanks for checking out Wild Facts.

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