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What are some similarities between an extinct and current Australian organism?

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element-water | Student, Grade 6 | (Level 1) Salutatorian

Posted July 31, 2013 at 10:29 AM via web

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What are some similarities between an extinct and current Australian organism?

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trophyhunter1 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted July 31, 2013 at 2:19 PM (Answer #1)

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Australia is home to mammal Marsupials. These are mammals that have a marsupium or pouch where their undeveloped young continue to develop after birth by feeding on mother's milk, protected in a pouch. Marsupials that exist today include: various types of kangaroos, wallaroos and wombats. The common wombat is herbivorous, a tunnel digger and active at night. An extinct giant wombat  known as Diprotodon superficially resembled a rhinoceros though without a horn. It had a pigeon-toed appearance. That is due to the fact it had feet turning inward. It had strong claws on the front feet and its pouch opening faced backwards. Fossil footprints show a covering of hair on the feet, which indicates it had a coat similar to a modern wombat. It is believed they went extinct shortly after humans arrived about 50,000 years ago. It was the largest marsupial known thus far to ever have lived.

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