(often reffered to as "Byrne's Marsupial Mouse"
after P.M. Byrne the first Euorepean to collect a
specimen) is found in Central Australias hot stony
desert and dry grasslands. Seldom seen in the wild,
the Kowari's habitat consists of stony desert and dry
grasslands. The Kowari is a ground dwelling carnivorous
marsupial, living either in its own dug burrow or
in the hole of another mammal. The Kowari is a solitary
animal and marks its territory with secreations
from a scent gland and leaving scats and urine
at certain places throught their home teritory
When approached, Kowari are very aggressive with much hisssing and chattering
and thrashing of its tail.
Physical Description of KOWARI
Head and body: 13-18cm
Weight 70-140 grams
- light yellow to reddish
- Underbelly is white
- The back half of the tail
is covered with long
black hairs (a type of Brush Tail)
Sexual maturity in a Kowari is reached in the first year of life but breeding seldom
takes place until the second year between May and December.
The female Kowari (who may produce 2 litters per season) carries up to six
young on her teats for about eight weeks and suckles them in a nest
(of soft materials) for a further eight weeks.
Young Kowaris may ride on their mothers side or back (2-3 months old).
The young become independant 100 days after birth.
Eating & Sleeping The Kowari is well adapted to life in the
central desert and does not need to drink,
as it derieves needed moisture from its food.
When cold and food supply is scarce, the Kowari may
become torpid (a form of hibernation).
By day, it sleeps in a burrow (sometimes
can be seen "Sunbaking"), and at night it is
a fierce predator on insects, the larger
arthropods, and small vertebrates (eg birds,
rodents, lizards) The Kowari can stalk like a cat
and uses a direct neck bite when killing large prey.
Future Its range seems to have contracted considerably
in recent decades but it is not clear whether
this is an indication of its impending
endangerment or of cyclical changes in the
density of an opportunistic species, self
regulating its numbers to survive in a harsh
enviroment. So at this stage its Status is
listed as Vulnerable
Distribution: 100,000-300,000 square kilometres