Friday 2 July 2021

Update 2nd July 2021 - Expecting a Possum Baby Boom

It has been longer than usual since my previous update, but at least no dramatic events have happened in the interim. All of the possums are still visiting and healthy.

Walt has become a regular visitor.

Walt - 30th June 2021

He is still a bit nervous when he visits, but is becoming less so over time. I wrote last time that he had a white-tipped tail, but in fact it's a definite golden colour.

Walt - 11th May 2021

I don't have any recent photos of Marcel, but he's looking very healthy. When he first was seen in the area, he would regularly turn up with large pluckings and sometimes quite deep wounds, but for a while now he has escaped injury.

The two male possums, Walt and Marcel, visit pretty much every night and sometimes at the same time. Strangely, they don't fight with each other, and possibly the reason is that there are so many females around.

The large number of female possums is unusual for the area; in the past there has rarely been more than one female possum present at a time, but now there are four: Sasha, Wink, Pax and Shane.

All of them (probably including Shane, although I'm not 100% sure about her) currently have babies in the pouch. In springtime there should be multiple possums with back-riding babies and it will be interesting to see how this works out.

Wink - 22nd May 2021 [Photo by Xesce]

Shane has long since stopped sharing a nestbox with Sasha, and Sasha now chases her off and bites her if she gets too close. Shane managed to get coated in the unknown tarry substance twice more, but at least didn't plunge into it headfirst again.

Shane - 2nd July 2021

Shane also managed to tear the infrared illuminator off the camera in Box 4.

Shane in Box 4 - 5th June 2021

Currently, Shane is mostly seen sleeping in Box 4, Wink in Box 3, and Sasha seems to move between boxes 1, 2 and 7, with a preference for Box 7. Pax has stopped using the possum boxes, but she must have a sleeping place very near by (possibly a palm tree in a neighbour's garden) because she turns up every night - pretty much without fail - in the camphor laruel near the house just after dusk.

Pax - 1st July 2021

Sasha's baby (her 13th) is now big enough that it occasionally sticks its head out of her pouch. The weather is a bit cold (by Queensland standards) and the little one isn't going to do much adventuring out of the pouch for a while. I will put out a Baby Possum Alert when the baby becomes more active.

The ringtails in the area are still content to keep to themselves. A male ringtail and a mother and baby have been seen around. The mother and baby sort of look like they might be related to Nikita.

Mother and Baby Ringtail Possum - 6th May 2021

Male Ringtail Possum - 18th May 2021

More sugar gliders have been seen. The photo below is of a very small one (compare its size to the leaves nearby). After I photographed this one, it leaped through trees to meet up with another sugar glider and there were also the eyes of what might have been a third sugar glider visible in a tree further away. So it seems there is a family of sugar gliders around. Unfortunately they seem totally uninterested in the sugar glider box I put up for them.

Young Sugar Glider - 3rd May 2021

No more brush turkey chicks have been seen since the ones mentioned in the last entry, but that's only to be expected because the breeding season is long over.

Several brush turkeys have been seen in the yard, including a half-grown one with no yellow on it's neck at all. Quite likely this is one of last season's chicks.

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