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Eastern long-beaked echidna

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Eastern long-beaked echidna[1]
replica at MUSE - Science Museum in Trento
Scientific classification Edit this classification
Domain: Eukaryota
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Clade: Synapsida
Class: Mammalia
Order: Monotremata
Family: Tachyglossidae
Genus: Zaglossus
Z. bartoni
Binomial name
Zaglossus bartoni
(Thomas, 1907)
Eastern long-beaked echidna range

The eastern long-beaked echidna (Zaglossus bartoni), also known as Barton's long-beaked echidna, is one of three species from the genus Zaglossus. All of them occur in New Guinea. It is found mainly in Papua New Guinea between 2000 and 3000 meters above sea level.

It can be distinguished from other members of the genus by the number of claws on the fore and hind feet. It has five claws on its fore feet and four on its hind feet. The adult animal weights between 5 kg (11 lb) and 10 kg (22 lb). Its body length ranges from 60 to 100 cm (23.5-39 inches). It has no tail. It has dense black fur. The species is the largest monotreme and is slow moving. It rolls into a spiny ball for defense.

There are four recognised subspecies:

  • Z. bartoni bartoni
  • Z. bartoni clunius
  • Z. bartoni smeenki
  • Z. bartoni diamondi

The population of each subspecies is geographically isolated and they can be distinguished primarily by differences in body size.


[change | change source]
  1. Groves, C.P. (2005). "Order Monotremata". In Wilson, D.E.; Reeder, D.M (eds.). Mammal Species of the World: A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference (3rd ed.). Johns Hopkins University Press. p. 1. ISBN 978-0-8018-8221-0. OCLC 62265494.
  2. Leary, T.; Seri, L.; Flannery, T.; Wright, D.; Hamilton, S.; Helgen, K.; Singadan, R.; Menzies, J.; Allison, A.; James, R. (2008). "Zaglossus bartoni". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 2008. Retrieved 28 December 2008. Database entry includes justification for why this species is listed as critically endangered.
  • Flannery, T.F. and Groves, C.P. 1998 A revision of the genus Zaglossus (Monotremata, Tachyglossidae), with description of new species and subspecies. Mammalia, 62(3): 367-396