Life Span:15 years (oldest wombat in human care lived to 34 years)
Size: Body length: 100-120cm
Speed: When alarmed they can bound as fast as 40km per hour over short distances.
Wombat cousins: There are 3 species of wombat – the Common wombat, Southern Hairy-Nosed Wombat and Northern Hairy-Nosed Wombat. Like the Southern Hairy-Nosed Wombat, the Common wombat population is of Least Concern; however the Northern Hairy-Nosed Wombat which is found in Queensland is classified as Critically Endangered.
Both species of Hairy Nose Wombat have just that – a hairy nose – which is one feature distinguishing them from the bald nosed Common Wombat. They also have much softer fur, large pointed ears and wider nasal bones than the Common wombat.
A hard rear end: All wombats have a hard cartilage plate at the rear of their body to protect themselves and close off the entrance to their burrows.
Conserving water and energy: In times of drought the wombat browses on shrubs and conserves water by producing very small quantities of urine and dry faecal pellets. It will also rest during the day in a humid burrow, allowing its body temperature to fall, thereby conserving both water and energy.