#1
Old 08-20-2001, 02:26 PM
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I've been told that many an Australian has a pet Wombat and that they make especially good, affectionate pets. I also think they're extremely cute.

Is it possible to get a pet wombat in the US?
#2
Old 08-20-2001, 03:14 PM
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Wow! Zilch-O on Google, Altavista, webferret, etc.

I would however like to mention that the search terms I was using have inspired me! Yes! Should I ever start up a trans-hemispherical-type shipping company, I will most likely call it "Import-A-Wombat" or maybe "Wombatten-down-the-Hatches!" if it was by boat.
#3
Old 08-20-2001, 05:01 PM
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Well, I suppose it could be illegal to import the cute little furries, but I can't see what danger they could pose to the American ecosystem.
#4
Old 08-20-2001, 05:07 PM
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The only pet wombat I ever saw was on _Neighbours_. And Fatso the Olympic mascot.

Wombats are an endangered species. I've seen them dead byt the road but they are not exactly hanging round the suburbs in droves awaiting domestication.

Oh and they are not exactly little. About the size of a sheep with short legs.
#5
Old 08-20-2001, 05:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Arken
Well, I suppose it could be illegal to import the cute little furries, but I can't see what danger they could pose to the American ecosystem.
Well, they're pretty much super-groundhogs. You probably wouldn't want them digging up your back yard.
#6
Old 08-20-2001, 06:41 PM
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I'm not familiar with wombats being kept as pets in Australia. I'm not even sure it's legal without a permit. The original "Fatso" was part of an 80's Australian soap opera called "A Country Practice". It was very young, and was orphaned after its mother was hit by a car. IIRC, the producers of the show were legally obliged to either release the wombat into the wild when it reached a certain age, or to hand it over to the relevant authorities (National Parks and Wildlife Service) who would "untame" it prior to release.

They look cute in a way, but wombats can be very large and smelly. They don't look like they could do it, but they can run extremely fast when they need to. They're also agressive if they are threatened.

If you want a pet wombat, only do it if you're also the type of person who'd be willing to look after a wild boar. You'll be adopting a short, thick-set battering ram that can weigh hundreds of pounds (ask somebody who's hit one in their car about the repair bills). And say goodbye to your backyard. I'd be inclined to stick to cats or dogs.

BTW, koalas are a similar story. Cute as a button, but they're scratchy and irritable, and they stink to high heaven.
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#7
Old 08-20-2001, 06:47 PM
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1) Wombats aren't common pets in Australia. Nor are kangaroos or virtually any othe native mammal. Marsupials have all sorts of problems coping with life in the suburbs, including extreme sensititivity to most herbicides and pesticides. Even the pyrethroids that are common in aerosol insecticides, that are quite harmless to other mammals, will roll marsupials in low concentrations. Added to this permits are required to keep native animals and I don't think any state is going to give permission for a wombat. You certainly couldn't get a permit where I live.

2)Wombats are immensely strong for thir size and given to be fairly nomadic if conditions don't suit them perfectly. Being capable of digging through most wire netting the only way you could keep one as a pet would be to bury weldmesh about 4 feet in the ground, or else concrete the edge of your yard to about the same depth. This is a bit beyond what most people would be prepared to do to keep a pet. The lengths landholders have been forced to go through to control wombats has been extraordinary.

3)As Primaflora says these aren't exactly small animals. They eat large amounts of food and would completely destroy a suburban yard in about 2 nights.

4)Wombats, if they ever got into the wild, could pose a massive threat. They eat considerable amounts of food and breed reasonably fast for a large animal. In Australia they have caused massive problems smashing down fences, eating pasture and crops and, probably most importantly, killing stock. No I'm not joking. Cattle and horses in wombat country quite often fall through the burrows, which are up to 3 metres deep, and as a result break legs, effectively killing them. For this reason extermination campaigns against wombats were carried out in all parts of the country. There's a line in the classic Australian poem 'The Man From Snowy River' that runs "The wild hop scrub grew thickly, and the hidden ground was full, of wombat holes, and any slip was death." Wombats have also been known to kill children. Their defence against predators entering their burows is to turn around and run backwards under it. They then lift their body and crush the animal to death agaisnt the burrow roof. Since the burrows are more than large enough to admit a child, and children will explore caves the inevitable has happned more than once. Anyone debating whether wombats cause problems should probably read Scylla's classic thread on demon grounhogs from hell, and then multiply the problem 10 fold to account for a considerably bigger animal with no predators and no parasites. Not a nice scenario.

5)Wombats aren't an endangered species. The common wombat is listed as, not surprisingly, common. The Southern hairy nose is listed as common but restricted IIRC, while the Northern hairy nose is the most endangered mammal on the planet with about 30 breeding femlaes in an area of about 4 square km.

6)Wombats are definitely cute and cuddly. Even wild caught specimens are so dopey they'll happily let you handle them so long as you don't try to turn them over. They're incredibly stupid, a bit like a retarded puppy, but oh so cute.


7) It's next to impossible to get a private export permit even for major pest species like kangaroos, cockatoos and galahs that are shot and poisoned in their thousands. The odds of getting a permit for the fairly innocuous wombat is going to be zilch.
#8
Old 04-25-2016, 06:40 AM
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Originally Posted by Colibri View Post
Well, they're pretty much super-groundhogs. You probably wouldn't want them digging up your back yard.
Colibri - I wouldn't mind having a wombat as a "helper" in my yard. I'm both a vegetable and ornamental gardener / landscaper by hobby. The little guy could just dig my holes and then I'd plant something in them !
#9
Old 04-25-2016, 07:02 AM
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I suppose it could be some sort of business model, hiring out wombats or wild boars instead of rotovators, but there's probably plenty of good reasons why no-one's tried, any more than people hire out sheep to mow lawns.
#10
Old 04-25-2016, 02:06 PM
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Originally Posted by PatrickLondon View Post
I suppose it could be some sort of business model, hiring out wombats or wild boars instead of rotovators, but there's probably plenty of good reasons why no-one's tried, any more than people hire out sheep to mow lawns.
Oh, but they do. It's a thriving business model.

http://businessinsider.com/sheep...-costs-2011-11

And Google has other hits for companies that advertise their sheep and goats for lawn care.

Last edited by cochrane; 04-25-2016 at 02:07 PM.
#11
Old 04-25-2016, 03:02 PM
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When I read the title of the thread, my first thought was "Has Tony Kushner written a new trilogy?"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tony_Kushner
#12
Old 04-25-2016, 03:59 PM
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Would a zombie wombat be a zombat or a wombie?
#13
Old 04-26-2016, 09:06 AM
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I had a pet wombat for a short while - a rescue baby who was growing up. This was before they were protected. All the battering-rams and garden-destroyer anecdotes above are an understatement.

Cute and loving and I simply adore them. But not as a pet. They have continuously growing teeth and have to wear them down. Skirting boards are at exactly the right height. If I didn't leave the back door open, he would just walk through it. Fences are nothing. Dig under or walk through.

They have no neck and incredibly thick skin. There is one old film I have seen (regret seeing and never want to see again, but still ...) of a wombat being attacked by five reasonably large dogs. There is nowhere a dog can grab. The wombat turned on its back and lashed out with huge sharp claws. It killed four of the dogs and the other ran off. It then rolled over, stumbled up and waddled off completely unharmed.

In the wild, they are incredibly docile, eating only plants, harming no-one and spending their days sunning themselves outside their burrows and their nights feeding. In the wild they are gorgeous. And that is where they should stay.
#14
Old 04-26-2016, 10:07 AM
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"Common wombats are sturdy and built close to the ground. When fully grown, they can reach between 80 and 130 cm, and weigh between 17 and 40 kg." {Wikipedia}

Are we sure they're herbivores? 'Cause, like ... damn ...
#15
Old 04-26-2016, 05:16 PM
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Unless you're a semi-pro wom player, it's far better to rent them IMHO.
#16
Old 04-28-2016, 10:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CalMeacham View Post
When I read the title of the thread, my first thought was "Has Tony Kushner written a new trilogy?"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tony_Kushner
+1
#17
Old 04-28-2016, 02:40 PM
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The North American model is variously called the ground hog, whistle pig, and woodchuck. It's a lot smaller than a wombat, but just as troublesome. It likes to dig burrows under foundations, leading to the collapse of many buildings. Their burrows are called chuckholes, and the unfortunate man or horse who steps in one might get a broken leg.

In Indiana, a hunter may legally hunt ground hog every day of the year (even on Feb. 2nd), with no bag limit.

Some folks say a roasted one is tasty, if greasy. That's open to debate.
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