From Bushwalk Australia
A yabbie straw, or yabbie tube, is a piece of flexible tube used as a straw to suck water for drinking from anywhere that would be difficult to get water out by other means. It is so named because one ideal source of water is the yabbie holes that are found in the ground in many parts of central and south west Tasmania and a straw is one of the few easy methods by which water can be extracted from them.
The yabbies dig burrows which are usually full of water and after sucking the water out, they refill quickly by seepage from the wet ground in which they've been dug.
In South West Tasmania, everything is always wet, but on some walking routes, accessible water sources such as creeks or lakes can be a long way apart. The yabbie straw can also be used to drink water from shallow puddles or small trickles or any other water source too difficult to get a cup or bottle into.
The earliest known recorded use of the term 'yabbie tube' was on page 147 of the 'South West Book' published by the Australian Conservation Foundation, 1978.