Truffle is a young Echidna, today she returned to the wild after she was orphaned last November when an excavator accidently excavated through an Echidna burrow. Miraculously little Truffle was spotted in the dirt. She had no spines, her eyes were not yet open and she looked just like a little ball of clay. She was quickly contained in the excavator driver’s shirt whilst he contacted WIRES.
Truffles weighed just 281 gram, still very much dependent on mum and being unable to reunite them Truffles was brought into WIRES care.
By January Truffles had developed into a little spiny Echidna puggle when another puggle was found orphaned, she was named Miss Moss and was the same size as Truffles, they were joined by yet another orphaned puggle in February, he was named Squirt.
The trio thrived in care being fed special Echidna formula in order to ensure they got the correct nourishment, allowing them to develop as they would have done with their mum.
As they grew they were given termite mounds to excavate, dig out and munch on delicious termites, not only giving them nourishment, it also allowed them to develop skills needed once they were released back to the wild.
April is usual dispersal time for Puggles, the trio is now approximately 8 months old and as would have happened had they been raised by their Echidna mums, they are ready to start life in the wild as independent Echidnas.
Earlier today, WIRES volunteer Echidna carer Leoni said goodbye
she watched as Truffle, Miss Moss and Squirt eagerly started to dig and burrow into rotting logs at a safe release site in the bush, they displayed all the correct instincts, their life although interrupted was back on track to a long life ahead.
Did you know that an Echidna can live in excess of 50 years in the wild?