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On this episode of Breaking Trail, Coyote attempts to pickup and hold one of the spiniest creatures on the planet…the Echidna!
Native to Australia, Echidnas are one of only two mammals in the world that actually lay eggs! Is that unique or what?!
In addition to laying eggs, and for being the inspiration to Sonic’s sidekick “Knuckles”, they are also notorious for their extremely spiky coat of quills. Much thicker and longer than that of a hedgehog these spears turn otherwise adorable creatures into living pin cushions! They are defiantly not something you’d just want to pickup on a whim, that's for sure.
That said, in today’s video that’s exactly what Coyote Peterson will attempt to do…hold an Echidna without wearing any gloves! Yikes!
Get ready meet a living ball of spikes!

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HUGE THANKS to the Billabong Sanctuary and their staff for hosting the crew at this location and for all the work they do to preserve Australias magnificent wildlife. To see an Echidna for yourself consider making a visit! -
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Category: Pets
Caption: What's going on coyote pack are you . ready to meet one of the most bizarre . creatures to call australia home let me . give you a hint as to what you're about . to see it has no teeth it has hair and . it also lays eggs any guesses if you . don't know what it is stay tuned cause . we're about to enter into its enclosure . no gloves i'm gonna try to do this . without gloves without getting spikes . super spike . wow look at that racket australia's . famously known for its iconic mix of . unique animal species many of which . cannot be found anywhere else in the . world . some of them like the kangaroo are . incredibly plentiful and it's not. uncommon in the least to see them . quickly hopping across the outback when . it comes to recognisable reptiles when . you think australia you definitely think . about crocodiles however to my surprise . they were actually rarer than you may. think as both the freshwater and . saltwater varieties and have it mainly . the northern territory but what about . the animals that aren't considered icons . the ones who are seldom seen due to . their elusive nature and who in many . cases are also considered to be nature's . oddities today we are back at the . billabong sanctuary located in nome a . small town just south of townsville in . north queensland proudly listed as one . of australia's top ecotourism. attractions this family owned and. operated establishment is home to over . 50 native species including what i. consider to be the continents undisputed . champion when it comes to the title of. most bizarre so if you are ready let's . see if we can get up close with the . echidna come on guys how the keepers. have left the door slightly ajar let's . go inside and be extra quiet and see if . we can find it. oh that's right you can make me . you have to be careful where you step . when you're in this enclosure yes look . at that almost like a biological . landmine you may think that this is some . sort of cacti but that is in fact an . echidna that's it that's an animal and . it is buried down in the dirt you guys . want to see it i've got to dig it up and . that's that's about it it kind of looks . like a sea urchin right that's it that's . it it's just a ball of space a ball of . spikes looks like porcupine quills and . it's not something you want to come in . and sit down and have a picnic on so . just gonna sit right here next to it . well now it's really starting to move . hey buddy how you doing in there now . actually it's a lot bigger than that it . is buried down in the dirt and what . we're seeing right here is an incredible . defensive pose this creature is . incredibly speedy when it comes to . digging and all needs to do is sense . something dangerous in its environment . like a dingo and they will immediately . use their claws and powerful legs to dig . down into a little burrow like that and . erect these spines up in the air and . it's very tough to eat something that is . covered in spines like that those come . off in here fingers no its quills do not . release from its body like that of a . porcupine in fact they're not related to . porcupines at all i know you guys really . want to see this creature and to do that . i'm gonna have to take it out and no . gloves i'm gonna try to do this without . gloves without getting spikes now these . spikes are non-venomous but if i'm . spiked by them it is gonna cause some . irritation and it's gonna be very itchy . so they're sharp they're razor-sharp . here bring your hand in here and just . kind of prop down on top there it's like . a pincushion right yeah like every time. you touch it it moves and even that . imagine if you were a dingo and you come . into the environment to sniff this even . that little movement can give you a good . poke right in the nose you feel they . kind of lay down and wouldn't budge as . they get like mm-hmm really stiff . yep they can lay flat and then they can . also be wrecked like that to protect the . creature when it's buried down . underneath software you want to do this . well yeah you guys want to see it up . close right sure i want to see it but . only if you're willing oh yeah well let . me see my tactic here is gonna be to try . to get to its underside now their . bellies are much softer than the topside . so if i can get my hands sort of . underneath it . i can pull it out and what its gonna do . is curl up into a ball here we go i got . it megan here comes the face right there . no that's the rump end oh wow easy red . ugly strength there we go yeah there it . is. that's an echidna right there oh super . spike you can see its face on that side . yeah there's a little face right there . sit down on my lap this is a dangerous . little maneuver but i want to hold it . like this wow look at the spikes it's . just like a sea urchin hold on i gotta . get by the belly actually you know what . paddy yeah no they don't reminds me of . what's happened that videogame used to . play my favorite video game yeah sonic . the hedgehog. and actually what's really cool about . the echidna is that the echidna was a . character in the sonic series if you . guys remember knuckles the red one he . had those boxing gloves he was actually . an echidna based off of this animal and . look at that cute little face you see . that elongated nose that is specialized . for catching insects now there . insectivores which means they primarily. feed on bugs and they specialize in . eating ants and termites and similar to . an anteater they don't have teeth but . they have a long sticky tongue they use . that tongue to kind of feel around . inside of old rotting logs underneath . rocks and around in termite and ant . nests what they will do is just kind of . suck those creatures up into their mouth . and grind them up against the roof of . their mouth and then they have a meal hi . bud oh you're so cute and dirty look at . that little foot look at those paw pads . and they feel just like latex look at . that big claw up front it's like a . shovel it's interesting how the front . legs look very similar to the back legs . because these are little back legs here. see how stout they are a little cubby . fee yeah and the little pads feel like . latex and the front feet you actually. see the front feet really well but they . kind of look like the foot of a mole . it's interesting this animals like the . combination of so many different . creatures and i find that that seems to . be the case with many of the animals . here in australia they're like this . weird mix of all these different . creatures that were used to seeing in . the united states what if they came to . smell like i'm not sure i want to get my . oh musky a little musky i don't know if . they secrete any sort of musk or if . that's just from the dirt that it's been . bearing around in now do they shed their . quills yes they can't show their quills . just like hair and they do actually have . hair little coarse bristly hairs in . between all of these spines and their . skin is incredibly leathery now other . than the platypus this is the only . mammal that lays eggs and the female . will actually carry the egg inside of . her for several months and then when she . lays it it takes about ten days for it . to hatch so bizarre a mammal that lays . eggs how many eggs daily it was just a . single egg that's it one egg is all this . animal will lay you see if i kind of set . it down for a second it'll start to walk . can we go watch this you guys want to . see it dig into the ground watch how . fast it's able to burrow down just . any sort of disturbance in the . environment look at that to actually . push the dirt out to the sides and those . stout little legs and claws allow them . to do that so they don't necessarily dig . down forward to protect themselves they . dig straight down so that then they can . create that pin cushion defense pose and . they have incredible camouflage - i mean . any sort of environment that's made of . sticks and leaves and dirt and this . thing is gonna blend in perfectly . look at that it's already buried back . down all right let me see if i can get . him back up here surprise we put it back . down after so long . yeah i didn't really think about that . okay they are so like this is me trying . to lift the echidna out from under the . ground and it is locked in place they . can imagine if it nestled itself up . against a log or in between some rocks . it'd be absolutely impossible for a . predator to dislodge it all right let's . see if we can bring the echidna back up . from under the dirt come here buddy i . was so starting this game of operation . there there's this base you know there's . a little nose bud . [music]. pretty cool huh. that's really cool you want to you want . to pet its back kinda want to try to . hold it you want to try to hold it you . think it's okay oh yeah you just got to . get it from from underneath here here go . ahead and set down your camera all right . just be really really gentle i was told . if i keep my hands flat yeah actually if . you if you put your hands flat i can . kind of lay it behind you like that and . then kind of feel for the belly oh there . you go yeah it's got me got it . spiky right oh i got you buddy hi that's . pretty cool now what most of you . probably don't know is that knuckles was . your favorite song that john kerry was . the underside is is really soft and . write our code yeah you would never . think that by looking at the top well . you can have a really soft underbelly i . guess if you have back hair and spines . like this yeah yeah i got i have a . strong grip yeah they really do like the . handshake those little stubby feet . really can grab onto you it's really . warmed up yeah this point i feel like . we're pretty comfortable together i'm . not getting spine too bad you're just . hanging it out you know i found out what . that kid his name is you want to know . yeah what's his name. spike spike that's a good original name . for an echidna like this this was pretty . cool getting up close with one of the . only monitoring's that's here in . australia the echidna i'm coyote . peterson be brave stay wild we'll see on. the next adventure . all right setting back down into the . dirt he's gonna disappear you ready . and here he goes oh echidnas truly . ranked as being one of the planet's most . uniquely bizarre animals and while their . spike covered bodies may give them an . outwardly aggressive looking appearance . these ambling little monotremes are as . kind-hearted as it gets if you ever . encounter one of these egg-laying. mammals in the wild do not attempt to . pick it up trust me when i say you will . regret those spines however if you . simply admire it from a respectful . distance i promise that an encounter . with an echidna is something you will . never forget . hey coyote pack i have some exciting . news i'm proud to announce that the crew . and i will be back on tour in 2018 with . brave wilderness live visiting cities . all across north america our first shows . are in anaheim and san diego california . from there we head to phoenix arizona . beyond that we will be visiting san . francisco california portland oregon . seattle washington and boulder colorado . with many more shows to be announced in . the coming months tickets can be . purchased in the brave wilderness . website so make sure to reserve your . seats today and don't forget subscribe . so you can join me in the crew on this . season of breaking trail . i'm heidi pearson be brave . [applause]. .

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