The most beloved and confusing creature of the animal kingdom, the platypus, is potentially at risk of extinction due to the looming threat of climate change.
And we thought we only had koala problems.
Researchers estimate that there are fewer than 300,000 breeding adult platypuses left in Australia.
Dr Phoebe Meagher, a Taronga Zoo Wildlife conservation officer, said there have been a number of local extinctions up and down the coast.
"The poor platypus have lots of threats and they are compounding threats. The biggest one is climate change at the moment," she said.
"The drying up of rivers, bushfire, flooding - all these extreme weather events that we are seeing due to climate change is really impacting the population."
The other major threat to platypus populations was urbanisation.
Researchers found that their habitats had shrunk by around 22 per cent.
"River pollution, habitat fragmentation, urbanisation are all really big factors threatening the platypus population as well," she said.
"While scientists did not believe the platypus was real for about 100 years, after their first discovery. When we confirmed they were real they were hunted," Dr Meagher said.
"There are examples of blankets and coats being made of upwards of 100 platypus.
"So, the population got off to a really rocky start and the numbers haven't fully been able to recover."
Now, conservators and researchers are in a race against the clock to help save the iconic animal pictured on the 20 cent coin.
"We are having to put in emergency first response facilities for platypus now, because now there is not enough healthy wild habitats," she said.
"So, what we are having to do is build these facilities to keep them safe until conditions in the wild improve. An example would be the new facilities out in Taronga Western Plain Zoo that can hold up to 65 platypus if there is ever a drought, flood or fire that can risk the platypus."
Dr Meagher said the best way to protect these cute but deadly little mammals was by making sure waterways were clean and mitigating the impact humans had on the environment.
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