Love The Northern Hairy Nosed Wombat
3 and 4
This wombat is 3-years-old and is very proud of his warren. He took over a system from an old wombat and expanded it, it’s so much bigger now! He is critically endangered and is so happy the humans have finally decided to give his species a helping hand. But there are still many predators he has to watch out for and because his population size is so small he must be careful not to mate with anyone he’s related to, easier said than done!
The wombat, the round-bottomed, snub-nosed, absolutely adorable Aussie animal. Wombats may look ungainly but they are actually very quick, reaching speeds of up to 40 km/hr! There a three species of wombat, the most endangered being the northern hairy-nosed wombat with only 250 left in the wild. They once lived throughout New South Wales and Victoria but can now only be found in the Epping Forest National Park. The largest of the species it also has the softest fur and wonderful fine whiskers.
These wombats live a solitary existence, building warrens which are large and complex tunnel systems deep beneath the sand. These are huge and can cover an area of up to 300 hectares. They are nocturnal but sit out in the sun on winter mornings and afternoons to warm up. They are herbivores and love to eat roots, herbs, and different grasses.
Northern hairy-nosed wombats are monogamous and the mother will give birth to one baby at a time. As wombats are marsupials, the babies will climb into their mothers’ pouch not fully developed where it will stay and continue to develop for 6-9 months. They will leave their mother when they are a year old.
In the early 20th century, the northern hairy-nosed wombat was thought to be extinct. Luckily that was not true. Even so, there is still a long way for them to go before they are out of the red-zone. Originally one of the main threats was a shortage of food due to competition from livestock. Now, the cows aren't so much of an issue, but the eastern grey kangaroo is still there to munch away their grass. There are also threats of predation from wild dogs, risks from drought, floods and fires, disease, and of course all of the risks that come with having such a tiny population size (like genetic diversity). A lot of wonderful work has been put into conservation efforts for this adorable marsupial such as habitat protection and the creation of a second colony. But there is still a lot more work to be done.
HOW TO HELP
Based off real animals that Gillie and Marc met while travelling, the public will be able to meet individual animals.
With public art, more people will come into contact with these sculptures, will stop and consider them, will take a photograph, and will discuss this with their friends and family. Through this increased exposure, the message of love, family, and conservation will be spread much further than any piece of art in a gallery ever could. It will bring people into close contact and will help them to fall in love. With love comes a greater urge to want to create a change and save all endangered animals.
The sculpture will be aligned with the hashtags #LoveTheLast to raise unparalleled awareness about the sculpture’s cause across the globe.
To help protect these animals, please donate to the WWF: https://www.wwf.sg/SOURCES