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Echidna study unlocks mating habits

18 November 2012 Last updated at 03:13 GMT

Scientists in Australia have unlocked the breeding habits of a small animal called the echidna, opening the way for them to save a range of endangered mammals in the wild.

The hedgehog-like echidnas have similar biological and mating patterns to many other animals, like porcupines, but until now it had been thought impossible to breed them in captivity.

Duncan Kennedy reports from Sydney.