Sunday, 6 May 2018

Update 6th May 2018

Tarzan is becoming less tolerated by Sasha. A month ago he was able to tear food out of her mouth, but now she bites him and chases him off if she sees him eating food in her vicinity.

Tarzan - 23rd April 2018



Tarzan - 23rd April 2018

Tarzan - 28th April 2018 [Photo by Xesce]

Although he might look innocent, Tarzan is a bit of a fiend when he comes into the house; he immediately chases after any human toes in the vicinity. Usually, he doesn't bite, but on one occasion he chomped down hard enough on my toe to draw blood. Actually, he didn't bite very hard and I think the cut was mainly caused by his teeth scraping over the toe. By the way, I don't think possum bites or scratches are any more of an infection risk than any other type of cut, but I recommend using antiseptic just in case.

Toe, bitten by Tarzan - 2nd May 2018

Sasha - 23rd April 2018

Sasha will almost certainly have another baby in the pouch by now, but there is no significant bulge at this stage. By then end of next month it will probably have grown to size where it will be sticking the occasional arm or leg out of the pouch when in the nestbox.

Arrow has not been seen since March. This was about the expected time for him to depart the area (Mischa, Sasha's baby from a year before Arrow, also departed in March). Arrow is a larger than normal possum and hopefully this will give him an edge when it comes to surviving on his own.

The python hasn't been seen for several weeks. A few days ago a neighbour reported that birds had been making a fuss in the garden (which is often, but not always, a sign that there's a python about), so it might still be in the area.

Koji has returned, and had brought one of his babies (Akira, I think) with him.

Koji (left) and Akira (right) - 3rd May 2018

It's difficult to tell which of the baby ringtails (Akira and Nikita) is which. Akira had more white on his tail, but the difference is small and unless the two are together it can be difficult to tell them apart. It's quite possible the possum I referred to last time as Nikita is in fact Akira and/or that the possum with with Koji is in fact Nikita.

Nikita - 8th April 2018

It looks like Nikita has a pouch in the photo above, but in fact he is a boy. It can be difficult to tell the gender of young ringtails and I am often fooled. The males have visible testicles, but they are small and hidden in the fur from most angles -  it would be easy enough to tell if you picked up the possum and had a look, but we don't interfere with possums unless there's a real need.

Akira - 3rd May 2018

Akira - 3rd May 2018


It does seem that the baby seen with Zoƫ is different to the one seen with Koji (regardless of which baby is which), so most likely both of the babies are still around.

Wasabi now hasn't been seen for a year. This is longer than he's ever been away before. Wasabi was six years old when he was last seen. Ringtails are said to live up to 10 years in captivity but only 6 years in the wild, with the majority not surviving past 3 years. So it's likely that he's no longer with us, which is sad, but at least he lived to a good age for a ringtail.

Although I can't be sure, I think there's a good chance that we gave him an extra three years of life. In early 2014 he had a serious tail infection which was getting steadily worse. We took him into Possum Hospital and cured him in March of that year. In July 2015 he was cured of another tail infection which was going the same way as the first. It is likely that either of these infections would have resulted in an unpleasant death.

For a little while, a rat, who has been named Tikka, was visiting the possum feeding area. This is the first rat brave enough to visit for a considerable time.

Tikka - 15th April 2108

Galen the gecko is also still around, somehow surviving despite all of the predators in the area.

Galen - 29th April 2108

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