David Rabbitborough's A to Z of Australian Species



All around the coastline of Australia, on almost any morning we can see strange little creatures milling around on the sand, in small groups, huddled together for warmth. They are called Surfies - so called because of their strong habit of throwing themselves into the surf.

This odd practice is due to the Surfie's odd mating habits. The Surfie, it appears has a chronic fear of the most opposite sex. Most of the day the Surfies, who are almost exclusively male, sit around on the beach drinking and smoking. Suddenly a pack of females appear over the sand dunes looking for mates. The Surfies go into a wild panic and race headlong into the water. The Surfie climbs onto the long flat raft which they always carry just in case of such an attack. Unfortunately the waves nearly always wash them back up onto the beach where the females capture them and claim them as partners. The vanquished surfies meekly allow themselves to be dried off and led away to small dwellings that look and smell like caves but have wheels underneath, where for hours we can hear the unfortunate creatures scrabbling and struggling trying to escape the clutches of their predatory companions.

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