Big Foot the Northern Hairy-nosed Wombat lives alone in his comfortable burrow. He comes out at night to feed and exercise, but is very aware of the dangers he faces oustide. The grasses are drying up and the night is full of predators – dingoes, wild cats and owls.
When Big Foot finds better feed in another feeding ground, he decides to build a new burrow. Night after night he works on this burrow, returning to his old place to sleep each day. Eventually, though, he moves to his new burrow. Here, his greatest moment of danger comes on the night of the full moon, when the bright light exposes him to predators. His quick thinking and the element of surprise help him to overcome the danger.
Wombat Down Below is a fiction story, but it is based on real events in a small national park in central Queensland, where the only remaining colony of Northern Hairy-nosed wombats is found. A double paged spread at the back of the book describes the plight of this critically endangered species, and efforts to ensure their survival.
Author Jill Morris is passionate about Australian wildlife and about educating children (and adults) through her stories. Illustrator Lucy Everitt has provided life-like detail, with a special feature the cross sections showing the inside of the wombat’s burrow.
Wombat Down Below is both an entertaining story book and an outstanding educational aid.
Wombat Down Below, by Jill Morris, illustrated by Luci Everitt
Greater Glider, 2004