This cheerful looking animal is called a Quokka and belongs to a class of animals called Marsupials. A distinctive characteristic of Marsupials is that they are not fully developed when born. Their young have to be carried in a pouch in order to survive. Perhaps the most well-known marsupial is the kangaroo, or perhaps the frightful Tasmanian devil.
Quokka´s are often found on the islands of South Western Australia, in particular on Rottnest Island just off Perth and Bald Island near Albany. The Quokka´s most threatening predators are cats, dingos (wild dogs), and foxes. Locally the Quokka is known as the Kangaroo Rat and are a herbivorous and nocturnal species.
Quokka´s weighs about 2.5 to 5 kilograms (5.5 to 11 lb.) and are 40 to 90 centimetres (16 to 35 in) long with a tail of 25 to 30 centimetres (9.8 to 12 in). It has a stocky build, with distinctive short brown coarse hair, hunched in posture, rounded ears, lighter under parts and a short, broad head.
Its coarse fur is a grizzled brown colour, fading to buff underneath. It has the ability to climb small trees and shrubs. Its hind legs enable it to hop and climb trees.
Clear-fell logging and agricultural developments have reduced the Quokka´s habitat, thus contributing to the decline of the species. The introduction of cats and dogs, has added to the problem, as has the clearing and burning of the remaining (swamp) lands.
The Quokka poses no threat to humans, and — as these pictures make it abundantly clear – they are super cute.