Q:

How much does a platypus weigh?

A:

Quick Answer

The duck-billed platypus weighs between 2 and 5 pounds, and males are generally larger than females. Platypuses lose fat seasonally after the winter, making them lighter in the spring than in the fall. The average weight for adult males and females, regardless of season, is 3.35 pounds.

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Full Answer

Their seasonal weight loss is an adaptation to cold weather. Although platypuses do not formally hibernate, they may enter a state known as "torpor" in the colder months. During torpor, the animals become completely inactive and their body temperatures drop. Platypuses may remain in this state for up to six days, living off of stored body fat.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is the only mammal that lays eggs?

    A:

    According to the University of California at Berkeley, the duck-billed platypus and four species of spiny anteaters are the only mammals that lay eggs. All of them live in New Guinea and Australia.

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  • Q:

    What eats a platypus?

    A:

    The platypus is typically attacked by crocodiles, foxes, cats, dogs and large birds of prey, though they can also be attacked by water-rats and pythons. A platypus will attempt to protect itself by burrowing or by using its sharp spines that are located on the back of its legs.

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  • Q:

    Is a platypus a mammal?

    A:

    A platypus is a mammal. However, it's an unusual mammal in that it lays eggs. This makes it a monotreme as well as a mammal. It's also an aquatic creature that has a bill that resembles a duck's. The males have spurs on their back legs that produce venom.

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  • Q:

    What does a platypus eat?

    A:

    A platypus eats insects, shellfish, larvae and other small animals that it finds along the bottom of the streams and rivers near its home. It uses its bill and small rocks to scoop up these organisms.

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