Feb 122012

While their regular off-exhibit holding areas were being renovated, a pair of echidnas and several bettongs were given access to a service room overnight. Keepers first removed any items that the animals could damage or get hurt on. Bags of grain were raised out of their reach, but several heavy bags of bark chips were left in one corner since no one thought that they would bother them.

The following morning the keepers found that a small hole had been scratched into the corner of one of the bags and some bark chips had been spilled on the floor, but other than that the temporary housing had worked out just fine.

Soon, however, one of the echidnas was found to be missing.

Keepers moved the bags of bark chips, thinking that the animal might have crawled underneath, or wedged himself between the bags and the wall. When he wasn’t found there the search moved out into the exhibit on the chance that he may have been able to squeeze past the door.

Twenty minutes later the exhibit had been scoured several times and there was still no sign of the echidna. The keepers decided to check the storeroom again and someone remembered the hole in the bag. The bag was dumped out and there, sleeping peacefully in a little nest hollowed out of the chips, was the missing echidna.

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