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Zoo location: 
Scientific Name: 
Ornithorhynchus anatinus
Phylum: 
Chordata
Species class: 
Mammalia
Order: 
Monotrema
Family: 
Ornithorhynchidae
Genus: 
Ornithorhynchus
Species: 
anatinus
Status: 
Least Concern
Quick Facts

Lifespan: Average life span for a Platypus is between 4-8 years, although they have lived as long as 17years in zoos.

Size: Males – 50cm

Females – 43cm

Weight: Males – 2kg

Females – 1.5kg

Fun Facts
  • The Platypus uses its tail for storage of fat reserves
  • Platypus that live in colder climates are bigger than those living in warmer areas
  • They have strong claws on its feet for burrowing and moving on land.
  • The venom is powerful enough to kill small animals.
  • When first discovered, European naturalists and scientists believed that the animal was an elaborate hoax.
  • Platypuses, Platypus and platypodes are all technically correct plurals. 

Taronga has made a centenary commitment to the long-term support of this species. https://taronga.org.au/100-years/the-next-100-years/Platypus

At Taronga:

Taronga is committed to developing a breeding program for Platypus to learn more about the behaviour and biology of this elusive species. They are incredibly secretive and we are very proud to be one of only two institutions (Taronga and Healesville) that have ever successfully bred Platypus.

Taronga Zoo is home to many Platypuses, including “Annie”, the oldest known platypus in the world. Annie came into Taronga Zoo 21 years ago as a puggle from the wild in poor condition with severe injuries. She was very lucky to survive thanks to the dedication of the staff at Taronga and she was the first platypus ever to be hand raised.

Region: 
Source: 
www.iucnredlist.org
Year assessed: 
1996