My platypus babies aren’t babies anymore. Of course, they still feed on my milk. But they have grown so much in the last few months and look for their own food as well. To think they were born looking like little jelly baby platypuses (and the size of a jelly bean) just over 3 months ago. Now they are the size of very small cats and look just like me, but a bit smaller. My daughter weighs just over half a kilogram.
As I sit on the edge of the burrow entrance keeping an eye on them in the water, I can see my daughter practising diving and coming up again. So that is what I look like! She has a bill like a duck’s and a tail that is like a flat paddle and steers her along in the water. Her tail is hairy, though not so hairy on the top as the bottom. She is covered in dark, dense waterproof fur all over her body. I can see her shiny eyes and I know that she can see me because platypuses are very sharp sighted. When she dives, I can see the groove in the skin behind her eyes close up. That’s because she doesn’t want the water getting into her ears.
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I saw some humans yesterday along the creek bank. They had measuring equipment and clipboards. I wonder what they were doing? I hid in my burrow behind the tree roots and watched them go past. I bet they didn’t notice I was there. We platypuses don’t have too much to worry about when it comes to other animals. I always keep an eye open for eagles, dingoes, pythons or big goannas so that I don’t end up as supper though those predators are much more likely to catch an old platypus. (And I hear my cousins up north can have crocodile problems.)
It’s humans we have to worry about with their dams and their bank clearing and their dogs and their chemicals and their housing developments…