Stories of old Mexico by RLB Hartmann

Wombania comic strip Brave Chickens

Wombat Enemies

Man is the wombat's greatest enemy. Destruction of their natural habitat as well as hunting, trapping, and poisoning has severely reduced the wombat's population in many areas, and has completely eradicated it in others. The wombat's range is quite restricted and significantly smaller than it used to be. While crossing roads, many wombats are killed each year by motor vehicles.

Wombats do not have many natural enemies. Dingoes are their primary predator, along with foxes, and Tasmanian devils in Tasmania. For younger, smaller wombats, eagles, owls, and Eastern quolls (a native Australian marsupial "cat"), also pose a threat. The Tasmanian wolf, now extinct, used to prey on wombats.

Southern hairy-nosed wombat investigating a lizard

Southern hairy-nosed wombat investigating a lizard (picture courtesy Wendy Morphett, used with permission)

In addition, feral cats may transmit diseases to wombats and could attack young wombats. Feral and domesticated dogs also attack wombats. In the winter, foxes use wombat burrows for shelter and this can spread sarcoptic mange, a parasitic mite that digs into the wombat's skin. Mange can kill wombats, especially young or injured wombats. Mange is prevalent throughout most of the Bare nosed wombat's range, and is considered by some as the number one cause of death. Wombats are more susceptible to mange when they are under stress or undernourished.

Wombats also have to compete for food with introduced animals such as rabbits and livestock such as sheep, goats, and cows. Cattle can also collapse wombat burrows.

Wombats die from starvation (especially during droughts), attacks by Dingoes and domesticated cats and dogs, hunting, mange, and being hit by motor vehicles.

The wombat is now protected in all parts of Australia except for parts of eastern Victoria where it is classified as vermin and often shot.

by Peter Marinacci

Wombat gifts and apparel for wombat fans of all ages
FRAZ: Wanna play? Visit my page! BINKY: Actually, my page is intellectually superior. WINKY: Maybe, but my page is the best! TWINK: I don't think so! My page is! Wombat Information Center