Friday, 22 September 2017

Update 22nd Sept 2017

Sasha and Arrow are happy and healthy and are to be found sleeping together in Box 7 most days.

Arrow - 15th Sept 2017 [Photo by Xesce]

Arrow - 15th Sept 2017 [Photo by Xesce]

Arrow is a large possum for his age. Here he is back-riding on an unfortunate Sasha (who is herself a fairly large possum).

Arrow back-riding on Sasha - 27th Aug 2017

It is possible his father is Marlowe, who is also a large possum, although he looks much like Farley.

Marlowe has been seen only a couple of times in the past month and hasn't slept in any of the boxes. It's possible that he's now mated with Sasha and has gone back to being less bold, or maybe he has left temporarily to pursue another female.

Raffi has not been seen since he visited about a month ago, but it was always unlikely that he'd hang around for any length of time in his mother's territory - especially when the dominant male in the area was not his father and was particularly large.

Koji has now grown into an adult possum. He looks particularly healthy. Often otherwise healthy ringtails will be seen with patches of thinned or missing fur (the cause of this is still obscure), but Koji hasn't had this happen to him in a long time and his fur currently looks perfect.

Koji - 3rd Sept 2017

Koji is often seen in the company of another ringtail. To answer the question I posed last post, it turns out that there are in fact two female ringtails about. There is Zoë and another as-yet unnamed female ringtail. The second female has babies in the pouch and has a strange colouration on her tail; there is a very large dark patch in the middle of the white tip. Hopefully I can get a useful photo of this some time, but she is currently staying a respectful distance from the house. Zoë comes closer but is still not comfortable with humans and easily spooked.

Unknown Female Ringtail - 10th Sept 2017

[The photo above is a little blurred because it was taken from a considerable distance away.]

It turns out there is another brush turkey about.

Previously I had only ever seen up to three at any one time (Gatsby, Merlin and Byron), but now an extra one, who looks like Merlin, has appeared. This turkey may have been confused with Merlin in the past and has been named Dylan.

I don't know if Dylan is one of Gatsby's chicks or a female who has come into the area to mate with Gatsby. I can't be sure of the gender of any of the turkeys, except Gatsby.

Despite the warm weather, there have been no pythons spotted since the time of the tragedy with Ruby in March. I wonder if the large number of brush turkeys in the area might keep them away. Turkeys have very large claws, and might well be able to chase off a python that threatened their mound.

Elvis the Water Dragon is back.

He was recently seen sunning himself on a branch overlooking Gatsby's mound. The winter here was usually warm (more like a Darwin dry season), so I don't know if he needed to hibernate, however he disappeared completely over winter and it's good to know he's still around.

Elvis - 11th Sept 2017

Here's another photo which shows where he was sitting.

Elvis perched above Gatsby's mound - 11th Sept 2017

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