Friday, 25 August 2017

Update 25th Aug 2017 - Raffi Comes for a Visit

Raffi, Sasha's previous baby who left home abruptly at an early age, made a brief visit recently.

Raffi - 15th Aug 2017

Raffi had not been seen for two months prior to this. The most dangerous time in a possum's life is (supposedly) when it leaves home for the first time, and Raffi left home earlier than most, so it is very encouraging that he has not only survived, but appears to be happy and healthy and with no visible injuries.

Raffi hasn't been seen since his visit, but that's only to be expected; he's still quite small, and he's not going to hang around with Marlowe in the area.

Arrow continues to grow. A week ago he was still suckling and I posted a video of this on YouTube (it's not really an entertaining video, but I live in hope that someone might use YouTube for educational purposes):

Arrow Suckling on Sasha - 17th Aug 2017

He now appears to be fully weaned and voraciously tears food out of Sasha's mouth whenever he has the opportunity.

Although he's usually seen back-riding, he occasionally ventures off a short distance on his own.

Arrow - 21st Aug 2017 [Photo by Xesce]

Arrow - 21st Aug 2017 [Photo by Xesce]

Koji continues to visit. He has been a regular visitor for a long time now, and it will be nerve-wracking if he decides to take after his father Wasabi and suddenly leave the area for an extended period.

Sometimes Koji is seen sitting next to another ringtail some way off in the trees. The other ringtail hasn't come close enough for proper identification, but is most likely to be Zoë.

There is a slight puzzle here: In the last entry on this site, I posted a photo of a ringtail, which I claimed was Zoë, and which had a well-filled pouch. Reexamining the photo, it's not clear to me whether this actually was Zoë; the face was not clear, and the end of her tail (which has distinctive marks on it) was completely hidden.

I had assumed this possum was Zoë on the basis that Zoë was the only female ringtail seen in the area recently and it was about the right time to expect her to have babies in the pouch.

However, the ringtail seen with Koji is female, but has no babies; either in the pouch or back-riding. Are there two females? Did Zoë lose her babies or is she leaving them in a drey somewhere? I suppose it would be understandable that a possum who doesn't (yet) fully trust humans would keep her babies well away from the house.


  1. Nice to see that possums are thriving! The video with Arrow suckling is interesting, he apparently has to apply a lot of force to get the milk. But Sacha still manages to sleep through it! No wonder he was weaned soon.

    1. Yes, I'm happy there has been no sickness or injury in a long time.

      I think Sasha was pretty exhausted from carting Arrow around on her back all night. It might not be obvious from the photos, which tend to make all possums seem about the same size, but Arrow is a particularly large baby.