Friday, December 28, 2012

Echidna heaven

Amazingly we saw not one, but two, echidna's in the wild today. The plan was to head from the farm into Hobart for a couple of days to enjoy the yachts coming in on the finish line for the end of the Rolex Sydney to Hobart. An added bonus being to participate in the Hobart Food and Wine Festival so it was excitement all around. As you leave the farm, there is a stretch of dirt road, about 10 minutes driving, before you turn onto sealed roads. It was on this stretch we saw the first little echidna. Initially I was distracted by the two goats running along the side of the road. These we slowed down for. Then we realised that between our position and the goats, there was an echidna walking along. We stopped the car and I jumped out for a better view. Incredibly the echidna continued walking straight towards me....and kept coming. I only had access to the iPhone so the photos aren't the best, but this little guy just kept on coming. Perhaps the wind was disguising my presence, but he kept coming straight towards me....just before he would have had to climb into my lap to go up and over he turned off, headed down the ditch and went on his way. An incredible experience as he was so close I could have touched him....if I was stupid! Those quills would put most people/animals off. The second echidna experience was less a warm and fuzzy one than one whereby we held our breath as we watched another, larger, echidna survive crossing the road into oncoming traffic. The echidna survived, the car that stopped for him almost written off by the caravan behind as cars tried to avoid the confusion. Too close for comfort in my book!

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