What does the platypus eat and where it lives


One of the most curious animals that has a very peculiar appearance is the platypus. He is considered like one of the strangest animals on the entire planet. They are semi-aquatic mammals, Do you want to know where the platypus lives? We anticipate that you live in lakes, streams and rivers, but we recommend that you continue reading to learn more about these animals.

Platypuses, like many other animals that make up the fauna of planet earth, are they are also in danger of extinction, because the drought has a significant influence on the environment in which they can live, not counting the pollution of the rivers and therefore the diseases that these animals can suffer.

One of the factors that can conserve this species is the reproduction in captivity, but the platypuses that are in the wild, are not very likely to live, because with the passing of the years and the factors that we previously named, it reduces their possibilities.

Article Contents

Where does the platypus live?

Males cover a territory of approximately 7 km radius and in that same territorial dimension can be found from 3 to 4 females. They are water lovers And that's why that's where they dig and nest to form their burrows. For platypus no problem if they should live in humid, temperate, oceanic or warm climates

Where platypus live, it is usually in streams, riparian areas, elevated rivers, mountainous areas of Tasmania, in the rainforests of the Queensland coast, in eastern Australia and in the Australian Alps.

The geographical location where the platypus lives by predilection is in Australia, so much so that in the Australian cent coin the image of this strange animal There you can observe.

What does the platypus eat?

With such a strange appearance and somewhat difficult living conditions, a curiosity arouses us to know. What do platypuses eat? Is your diet as strange as your physical appearance?

Well, to satisfy our curiosity, we must know that when living in watery areas the food that the platypins generally eat is varied and is based particularly on products from rivers and lakes such as, crabs, fish, larvae, amphibians and other animals, but a very interesting fact is that They breastfeed when they are small.

Before knowing the life expectancy of platypus, we recommend you take a look at these other articles:


The platypus is described as an animal with a beaver's body and duck's beak. As one of the evolutionarily more different mammals currently alive, the platypus is immediately recognizable by its wide flattened beak, dense water-resistant skin, webbed legs, and its long, thick tail.

Although this species is famous for being one of the few mammals that lay eggs, the following are some curious facts and less known>

Where does the platypus live?

Endemic to Australia, the platypus can be found in eastern Queensland, New South Wales, along Tasmania, and east, central and southwest Victoria. In recent years, there has also been a population of recently introduced platypus on Kangaroo Island in South Australia. Throughout the continent of its natural habitat, the platypus lives, mostly, in freshwater lakes, rivers, lagoons, farm dams, and streams.

Most platypus are found in bodies of water that have land banks with roots, where adequate vegetation predominates to build their burrows. The platypus usually lives in streams that are no more than five meters deep, although sometimes they can be discovered in rivers up to 1,000 meters deep. Female platypus usually make two separate burrows, one for them and one male, and another to have their newborn pups.

What does the platypus eat?

Upon leaving their burrows, the platypus spends most of the afternoon and evening hours in the foraging of shallow waters in search of the invertebrates that inhabit the bottom. Their diet consists mainly of crustaceans, worms, shrimp, mollusks, annelids, crabs, dragonflies, mussels, trout eggs, tadpoles and insect larvae. In fact, platypuses can consume their entire body weight in food in a 24-hour period.

For 20 to 40 seconds at a time, the platypus seek their food by diving to the bottom of the stream, with their webbed feet and probing the muddy bottom with their sensitive beak. Since they must close their eyes underwater, these animals are guided in the murky water by detecting electrical currents created by small movements of the muscles of their prey. Then, the dam is stored in special bags behind the peak and is consumed after returning to the surface.

What does a platypus look like?

As a unique creature, the platypus is characteristic for having a long, soft and leathery snout that resembles a duck's beak. Most of its body, long and thin, is covered with dense fur, this thick hair is naturally water resistant and keeps the platypus warm and dry even in the water. With a multilayer coat, the final layer consists of long, flat hairs, which are useful in detecting the presence of nearby objects in muddy water. Although the plush fur that covers his streamlined body is dark brown in the back, it turns silver gray to yellow in the lower belly.

A platypus is about the same size as a domestic cat, typically between 12 to 24 inches long and weighing a maximum of two to four pounds. Although many mistakenly believe that their broad tails (like beaver) are used to propel themselves through water, they are more commonly used as a fat storage space. Allowing the animal to swim and dive without much effort, the platypus has webbed legs and short legs that protrude from the sides, like an otter. Therefore, we could say that the platypus looks like an otter, with duck's beak and beaver's tail.

Platypus Behavior

The platypus is generally considered a nocturnal and twilight animal, it is more active during the darkness of the night, although it can also be seen during the day, when the sky is cloudy. As an excellent swimmer, the platypus spend most of their waking hours propelling themselves through the water with a rowing motion of their front legs. Known for being a shy and lonely animal, which only meets during the mating season, the platypuses will spend about 12 hours a day swimming in search of food, alone.

As an endothermic species, platypuses are able to maintain a lower body temperature than most mammals, around 90 degrees Fahrenheit. During daylight hours, when it is not in the water, the platypus hides in a burrow that digs in a bank of land near the water.

Platypus reproduction

Within a polygamous mating system, males and females have multiple mating pairs. It is believed that females reach sexual maturity at two years of age and keep breeding until they are nine years old.

While the male assumes no responsibility for the care of their offspring after mating, the females will immediately build a burrow up to 66 feet long, blocked with plugs to protect the offspring from predators and flood waters . After their eggs have hatched, the mother will feed the young man with milk for about three to four months. At this time, young people leave the burrow and begin an independent life.

Mating season. The mating takes place in the water, and the solitary platypus only meet once a year in the breeding season, from June to October to reproduce.

Gestation period. About 21 days after the mating has occurred, the females will lay their eggs. After a short incubation period of only 10 to 14 days, the eggs will hatch.

Typical litter size. In most cases, the female platypus will lay between one and four eggs in a nesting burrow, made of wet leaves as bedding.

What is the current population of platypus?

According to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, the actual population of platypus is unknown, but the closest figures are in the low thousands. As a fairly common species, their populations still occur in approximately 80 percent of the river basins in Victoria.

What are the threats to platypuses?

Since the platypus is highly dependent on a freshwater environment, the animal faces the greatest threats of habitat destruction, waterway pollution, and clearing. Scientists also fear that their life expectancy may be diminished shortly due to the fact that platypus are increasingly being hunted by predators such as snakes, goannas, foxes, rodents and birds of prey. However, the platypus continues to be classified as of least concern and the populations are stable, with a very low risk of extinction.

Interesting facts about platypus

  • Male platypus have two small hollow spurs on their hind legs, which have the ability to release enough toxic poison to kill small animals or be extremely painful for a human being. Although this secret weapon is normally used against predators when threatened, it is also used during the breeding season, to scare off potential rivals.
  • Despite popular belief, a baby platypus is not known as a puppy. While there is no official name for a newborn platypus, many scientists simply call them "platypus calves"

Although the platypus has no real teeth, the animal has unique pads inside the mouth that can crush or pulverize its prey for consumption.

Platypus characteristics

It has a long white muzzle similar to the beak of the ducks with the difference that the ducks is hard, its waterproof, short and thick hair allows it to acclimatize quickly when it comes out of the water, its beaver tail is long and flat, in it It stores fat that serves as an energy reserve.

It measures a maximum of about 50 cm including its tail and its weight reaches 2 kg, although it is a mammal it reproduces through eggs, in each birth the female can lay up to 3 eggs.

When they are adults they change the teeth of milk for hard corneal plates, their hind legs similar to those of the otters serve them to be able to direct their body while they swim and although they cannot see under water thanks to the electro-receiving sense they can be oriented. It is a non-lethal poison animal but not harmless, its life expectancy is 10 years.

Danger of extinction

Like many of the animals that make up the fauna of planet Earth, the Platypus is also in danger of extinction, because of the drought that gradually suppresses the environments in which it can live, the pollution of the rivers that causes many diseases and also that he is sacrificed to use his skin as a raw material in various articles.

Although there are programs to reproduce in captivity, the amount of platypus that can be found in the wild diminishes as the years go by.

Where is the platypus?

East of Australia and Tasmania Island are the geographical locations where the platypus lives, in Australia it is considered an iconic symbol that even appears in the Australian 20 cent coin.

He lives in small elevated rivers, streams and riparian areas, adapting to the habitats and cold climates of the mountainous areas of Tasmania and the Australian Alps, as well as the rain forests of the Queensland coast.

Some specimens that were introduced in the Kangaroo Islands are preserved. A male platypus It covers a territory of up to 7km in radius, with 3 to 4 females in that same territorial dimension. They rest and nest in burrows that dig underwater and have easy access and exit to the surface. Warm, humid, oceanic and temperate climates are those that the Platypus tolerates.

How long do platypuses live?

The average life expectancy of the platypus It varies according to a parameter mainly, and it is the fact that it lives in full nature, or it does so in a controlled environment, that is, in captivity, such as in a zoo or in a nature reserve. Normally the platypus that live in captivity can reach a longevity of almost 20 years in some cases. On the contrary, if they live in freedom, their average life is reduced to almost half, being able to live an average of approximately 10 years.


The platypus is an excellent swimmer, which allows him to capture:

  • Aquatic insects and their larvae.
  • Mollusks
  • Crustaceans.
  • Earthworms and water.
  • Algae and aquatic plants.

Upon finding food the platypus will store it in its maxillary sacs next to small stones in order to crush it. Once the bags are filled, or if the dam is large, the platypus will go to the surface to consume the food.

What do platypuses eat?

The dishes are very little active during the day, but when night comes and hunger stalks completely change their behavior and do not stop until they get their food. Normally they go hunting at dawn, a few hours before the sun sets.

Despite its small size, this mammal has an unusual appetite. It is usually fed from the plants found at the bottom of lakes or rivers. It also feeds on a good number of shrimp and worms, and more invertebrates that it finds in its natural environment.

The platypus as we have said is a very little active animal during the hours with light, so we can deduce that it spends very little energy. That's why it's surprising that in one night you can get to eat a quantity of food close to your own weight .

When they capture the food they follow a process very similar to that of the mice. They keep it in their maxillary sacks to eat later when they have finished hunting.

As advice I recommend that never mess with a platypus. Although they seem harmless, these animals have a poison they have in the ram, which is capable of killing an adult. They will only use it when they feel intimidated or attacked. You are notified.

What does the baby platypus feed on?

The Platypus Baby has a somewhat different diet than the adult. There are some foods that you are unable to eat, so you supplement them with different ones. As the years go by you will change your tastes, consequently your diet.

In the first days of his life he will feed on his mother's breast milk until he can finally go hunting for his own food. The first times he will be accompanied by his mother and will capture small insects and larvae of these. It can also feed on earthworms, and various plants and marine waters.

The platypus is an excellent swimmer, however in the first stage of his life it will cost him more, so it is normal for him to escape some prey.