Thursday, April 16, 2020

N is for Numbats (Folktales of Endangered Species)

Welcome to the 2020 A to Z blogging challenge! This year my theme is Folktales of Endangered Species. I am researching cool traditional stories about rare, fascinating animals - to raise awareness of what we might lose if we don't get our collective shit together. Enjoy!

Species: Numbat (banded anteater, Myrmecobius fasciatus)

Status: Endangered

Why is the numbat's back red?

One day Walpurti (the numbat) and Ngintaka (the perentie lizard) were camping together, and they decided to paint each other's backs with pretty patterns. Walpurti took up a stick, dipped it into paint, and painted nice yellow circles on Ngintaka's back. They have been there ever since. In turn, Ngintaka took up a stick, and painted stripes on Walpurti's back.
When they were both done, they turned to admire their new colors. Ngintaka was very pleased with the circles, but Walpurti was not satisfied with the plain dark stripes at all. He picked up a handful of red dirt and threw it over his back. The red dust stuck to his fur - and Walpurti has been wearing dark stripes on bright red fur on his back ever since.

Sources: read the story here, here, or here.

How can I help?

Read about conservation efforts here, here, or here.

What animal's colorful patterns would you choose to paint on your own back?


  1. Love these animal tales! You worked hard on this challenge! See you tomorrow!

  2. Australia has the cutest critters!

    1. It does, though I’m biased. We also have lots of deadly creatures - snakes, scary things in the sea...

  3. The eastern screech owl blends really well with trees in my area, so I'd probably go with that if animal patterns on my back were a thing.

    I've never encountered these tiny creatures, but they're adorable! Thanks for sharing.

  4. Cute little ones! That's a tongue ;) Lovely tale, thank you!
    N is for Nature

  5. I think the red makes a great addition. Good work little numbat! What a tongue on the baby.
    Finding Eliza

  6. Fashion forward walpurti, eh? They look good in red and white:)
    Cool tale/tail:)

  7. Love this story - v. cute animals and a beautiful pattern.

  8. I always love these little stories of animals' mischief :-)

    The Old Shelter - Living the Twenties

  9. I guess the question is whether to go for beautiful/flashy or subtle/practical. I don't know, but my daughter has a pair of leggings that are striped around the calves and I always call them her okapi legs.
    Black and White (Words and Pictures)

  10. Awwww, they look adorable - I bet they are fast. Hmmm ... I've always fancied a jaguar's spots, although I would look ridiculous :D
    Tasha 💖
    Virginia's Parlour - The Manor (Adult concepts - nothing explicit in posts)
    Tasha's Thinkings - Vampire Drabbles

  11. Cute! I like anteaters :-)

    An A-Z of Faerie: Dragons