Amazing Australian Animals overview image

Amazing Australian Animals

  • Post Date9/13/2002
  • Reading Time2 minute read

Down Under

To start our exploration of Australian animals, we sailed a ship over a map of the world to show Australia's distance from other land masses. This continent has been geographically isolated for the last 40 million years, giving its species plenty of time and space to develop into the unique environments we know today.

  • School Children Learn To Be Kangaroos
    An animal version of Red Light, Green Light called Marsupials on the Move teaches participants the many different ways marsupials can get around. Kangaroos make big leaps, wallabies take smaller hops, and wombats lumber on all four feet, but everyone stops to take a bite when they hear "Food!"
  • Children playing outside
    Through images, actions, discussions, and games, kindergarten and first grade students discovered some of the amazing and unique animals from Australia.

Animals with Pockets

From koalas to kangaroos, Australia's best-known animals are marsupials, mammals who feed their young in a pouch. Each species of marsupials has special adaptations to help it take advantage of different food sources and habitats. Other marsupials include wombats, opossums, bandicoots, and quokkas.

  • Student with Koala Hat project
    How about a koala hat as a souvenir of your travels with our amazing Australian animals?

Fantastic Feathers

We discussed our feathered friends and listened to their calls: kookaburras, emus, lyrebirds, and fairy penguins.

Fierce Creatures

Predators range from the hunting dingo and scavenging Tasmanian devil to powerful crocodiles and deadly snakes.

In the Sea

No trip to Australia is complete without a look at the Great Barrier Reef, where millions of animals—big and small, floating and fixed—live in a diverse, interconnected underwater ecosystem.

Mammals That Lay Eggs?

Monotremes are the only kind of mammals that lay eggs. There are only four species of monotremes in the whole world, and Australia has two of them. Most of us have seen pictures of a platypus gliding through the water, but what about the spiny short-beaked echidna? These closely-related animals have very different ways of living: one uses its strong muscles and webbed feet to swim through rivers to eat crustaceans, while the other uses its long, sticky tongue to catch insects and has spines for camouflage and defense.

  • Students in classroom
    At the end of the day, students answered review questions to sail our ship back home.