The Bandicoot

Maideline Sanchez

When asking a few friends if they knew what animal Crash Bandicoot was, they would answer “Some kind of wolf or fox.” But when expressing to them that Crash was a marsupial whose actual name was the bandicoot, they would drop their jaws in disbelief and deny the truth at first.

Isoodon obesulus’s bristly and rough coats are grayish brown with off-white underbellies and feet. These small creatures are 12 to 17 inches in length and their tails run from 5 to 6 inches. They are mainly found in the rainforests east of Australia.

Bandicoots are nocturnal animals that search for food during the night while resting in logs, burrows, or vegetation type nests during the day. They are also solitary, chasing away other invading bandicoots except during mating season. While in a fight with another male, bandicoots use their hind legs for balance and at the same time claw at their opponents’ shoulders and backs.

Insects, small invertebrates, and plants are the main source of nutrients for the Isoodon obesulus. They dig holes large enough for their noses to reach in as well as search through rotting logs to find insects. They can be heard sniffing at night and when food is found they create a shrill whistle and grunt-like sounds.

A mature female can give birth from 2 to 3 offspring at a time which will suckle on one of the 8 teats inside the backward facing pouch. When the bandicoots are 3 months, they will immediately become independent.

Did You Know? The bandicoot is said to have the shortest gestation period of any mammal holding a record of 12.5 days pregnancy.