Welcome to Current TV
The Platypus is a semi-aquatic mammal endemic to eastern Australia, including Tasmania.
Together with the four species of echidna, it is one of the five extant species of monotremes, the only mammals that lay eggs instead of giving birth to live young.
The animal is best described as a hodgepodge of more familiar species: the duck (bill and webbed feet), beaver (tail), and otter (body and fur).
It is one of the few venomous mammals; the male Platypus has a spur on the hind foot which delivers a poison capable of causing severe pain to humans.
Until the early 20th century it was hunted for its fur, but it is now protected
Males are also poisonous. They have sharp stingers on the heels of their rear feet and can use them to deliver a strong toxic blow to any foe.
They live aside freshwater rivers or lakes, and create burrows for shelter and protection.
These creatures weight on average between 1 to 2.4 kilograms. They have an average lifespan of 12 years
The flat furry tail stores fat for the long cold winter in freezing waters. The platypus has developed to use its tail as a rudder, steering it while it swims.
These Australian mammals are bottom feeders. They scoop up insects and larvae, shellfish, and worms in their bill along with bits of gravel and mud from the bottom. All this material is stored in cheek pouches and, at the surface, mashed for consumption. Platypuses do not have teeth, so the bits of gravel help them to "chew" their meal.
When the Platypus was first discovered by Europeans in 1798, a pelt and sketch were sent back to the United Kingdom The British scientists were at first convinced that the odd collection of physical attributes must have been a hoax. It was thought that somebody had sewn a duck's beak onto the body of a beaver-like animal. Shaw even took a pair of scissors to the dried skin to check for stitches.
from the community