On February 13th, 2018 I presented to a class of fifth graders at Field Elementary. They are studying biodiversity in school right now and asked U.School if any of the students would be interested in presenting on a topic related to it. Of course I said I would! I chose the topic endangered animals and presented on one of my most favorite endangered species, the Tasmanian Devil. The school asked for “an expert” on the topic to be presented on and since I already know so much about the creatures I thought it appropriate to present on them. I wanted to be prepared. I did further research than my first presentation on them and created brand new slides that I thought more visually appealing to fifth graders. Below is a link to the pdf of my slides.

Endangered Animals

Here is all the information I recorded.

TASMANIAN DEVIL

 

TOPOGRAPHY

Found in tasmania- Island off of australia

Seasons are backwards there

Many different regions: rainforests, mountains, farmlands

Devils found in all areas of tasmania, urban and rural

 

TAXONOMY

Originally thought to be an opossum by george harris in 1800

Named in 1841 by french naturalist pierre boitard

 

SIZE

25 inches tall

Male: 18 lbs

Female 13 lbs

 

APPEARANCE

Heads can be up to a quarter of their weight so they can chomp down

Jaws open 75-80 degrees

Stores fat in its tail – healthy devils have fat tails

42 teeth

Teeth grow constantly throughout life

16% don’t have white marking

Stripes draw attackers to attack at less sensitive areas

Have five toes- one from the side four from the front to hold food

Hind feet have four toes

 

BREEDING

Males impress females by fighting

Breeding march-may

Devils are not monogamous

Give birth standing up

 

JOEYS

Babies are joeys go from birth to pouch. Stay in pouch for 100 days

Females give birth three weeks after conception to 50 babies

After leaving the pouch they stay in the den for 3 months

When born they weigh 0.18 grams

The front paws have digits

Size of raisins

Joey’s ride on mother’s ba

ck when she is hunting

After leaving pouch devils grow a pound a month until they are six months old

FEEDING

They make a lot of noise to show off when eating

Eat up to 15% of body weight in one day- 2lbs But can eat up to 40% in thirty minutes if opportunity arises (2lbs if 4 8oz steaks)

Eats dead animals, will eat fur and bones

Joeys like to climb up trees to eat bird eggs

Whiskers help locate prey in the dark

Prefers wombats because easy to catch and high in fat can be up to 66 lbs

Have been known to chew on shoes

Will dig to find corpses

Rip out digestive system first

Strongest bite force of any mammal on earth-

Largest carnivorous marsupial

 

BEHAVIOUR

Nocturnal

Like to sunbathe- They sleep in the sun

8.1 mph

Home range 1-10 miles

Do not make relationships, but remember each other

Do not travel in packs

Use the same den

Live 5 years in wild

ENDANGERMENT

Early farmers hunted devil because they would eat farm animals

Rewards were put up for killing devils, almost went extinct because of this

Large birds of prey go after joeys

10,000-25,000 left in wild

90%  decrease in population since 1996

Northwestern coast is the only tumor free area

In danger of dying bc of transmissible cancer

Devil facial tumor disease

First discovered in 1996

Devil’s immune system cannot recognize the tumor as foreign so they cannot fight it off

Genetically modified trees theorized to be cause

 

DEVIL ARK

Non profit organization

Founded in 2011 with 44 devils

5 successful breeding seasons with 180 joeys

150 devils

Rel

 

eased 22 devils in 2015

Not kept in pens, to reassure release to the wild will be easy

Goal 320 by 2018

11 ambassador devils available to adopt