Tuesday 25 December 2018

Update 25th Dec 2018

Nikita is visiting regularly. She seems to have inherited Koji's nature; she is extremely trusting towards humans and careful not to scratch when taking food from them. She currently has a couple of growing babies in her pouch and doesn't even mind if humans touch her pouch.

Nikita - 22nd Dec 2018

Nikita - 19th Dec 2018 [photo by Xesce]

Nikita - 19th Dec 2018 [photo by Xesce]

Koji is still around and is in good health. Koji is now nearly three years old. At this age his father Wasabi had a bad tail infection and had to be hospitalised, but Koji looks good and the fur he lost earlier in the year has completely grown back.

Koji - 20th Nov 2018 [photo by Xesce]

There was a bit of a ringtail altercation a little while back. One ringtail (possibly Pebbles or Bamm-Bamm) chased another (who looked like Nikita) through the trees. The first ringtail managed to catch up with the second and bite her on the tail. The second ringtail then lost her grip on the tree and ended up suspended by her tail, which was clamped in the jaws of the other possum. Ouch! Eventually the second possum freed herself, fell to the ground and ran off. Subsequently Nikita was seen with no visible injuries to her tail, so either she is very tough, or I was mistaken that the possum was her.

Also, there was another female ringtail with babies in the pouch seen about. She is shown below in the photo "Unknown ringtail with orange powder on her nose". This ringtail wasn't any of the known female ringtails, but appeared to recognise the humans. It's possible she could have been Maple.

None of the other ringtails have been seen for a couple of weeks. Now that it's summer there's so much greenery around that possums can easily stay out of sight if they want to.

The mysterious orange powder is back again this year.

When I posted about this before, someone commented that this is rust from underneath frangipani leaves. It makes sense that it might be related to a rust infection of some plant or other, but I don't believe it to be a frangipani in this case. There are two frangipani trees in the yard and at least one of them has had a rust infection before, but there's no rust visible on either of them now. Also, the possums never eat any part of the frangipanis, including even the flowers. It's about the only thing in the yard they don't eat - and they even eat camphor laurel leaves which must be like chewing on mothballs. So even if there was an infected frangipani somewhere in the area they wouldn't get the stuff smeared exclusively around their mouths.

Bilbo with orange powder on his nose - 18th Dec 2018

Pogo with orange powder on his nose - 18th Dec 2018

Unknown ringtail with orange powder on her nose - 1st Dec 2018

Bilbo has been completely healed of his injury and fur has now grown back over the area of the scar. The extra attention (and good food) that Bilbo received during his treatment appears to have caused him to turn into a regular visitor. Early on, he rejected his medicine when supplied on wholemeal pita bread (the usual option). He ignored even doughnut and gingerbread and could only be tempted by croissant. [By the way, it is not good to give possums foods like this, but occasionally possums don't want to take their medicine and since the alternative is likely to be an unpleasant death, the proverbial spoon full of sugar seems justified.]

Bilbo - 20th Nov 2018

Pogo is still around and from past experience he shouldn't leave the area until about February.

Pogo - 22nd Dec 2018

Bilbo seems unusually tolerant of Pogo. Pogo is no longer under Sasha's protection and is big enough that other males would be expected to take exception to his presence, however Bilbo usually allows him to go unmolested, even when there is food being offered. It's possible that Bilbo is Pogo's father. At the time that Pogo would have been fathered, the previous dominant male Marlowe had stopped visiting and while Bilbo wasn't seen (by the humans) until several months later, he could easily have been in the area at the time.

Sasha has a growing baby in the pouch. It's likely that if she starts using the possum boxes again, parts of her baby will be visible sticking out of the pouch. I will post a Baby Possum Alert if there's anything interesting to see.

There was an extremely rufous male brushtail seen about a month ago.

Unknown rufous brushtail - 24th Nov 2018

He was seen only a couple of times and it's possible that Bilbo chased him off after recovering from his injuries.

On the 8th of Dec I saw a brush turkey chick in the yard. It would have been newly hatched; no more than one or two days old. It was even more nervous than turkey chicks usually are and I was unable to get a photo of it. It hasn't been seen since that time, so either it's hiding very well (quite possible) or has been eaten by a cat.

Meanwhile, Merlin assiduously tends his mound, so there are presumably more eggs yet to hatch.

1 comment:

  1. I used to think it was the frangis butt maybe not. I would think it has to be a flower of some sort. None of the possums in my area nth bris have turned up with it yet but I have seen it in tha past. One of my ringtails just left I’m hoping she returns with a family love your work thanks