Thursday, 7 June 2012

Dunnarts

As my sister and I drove the six hours from Brisbane to her home we noticed a few dead animals on and by the road. Probably they were all Australian native animals, although we did not stop to look. A few roos and smaller furry little beings.
Sometimes Australians take our native animals for granted, but people in other countries usually know little about them.

Do you know much about dunnarts?


Here is one link.
http://www.australiangeographic.com.au/journal/tiny-marsupial-makes-big-impact-in-queensland.htm

Dunnarts are small furry animals about the size of a mouse, but are marsupials. They weight about 20grams. The body is about 9cm long and the tail about 6cm.
Dunnarts eat mainly insects although they will eat other small animals such as lizards. Dunnarts live in drier, cooler areas of Australia and New Guinea, preferring woodland and grassland regions.
21 species have been recorded. Oddly, the male dunnart's Y chromosome has only four genes, making it the smallest known mammalian Y chromosome.

A mother is transporting several babies.
Some dunnarts have successfully been kept in captivity but need to be kept indoors. A large glass cage, such as an aquarium, about a metre long would be suitable for a pair. You would need to have a sandy base to protect their feet and small hollow logs, some bark, and some grass tussocks creating an appropriate environment. Dunnarts prefer a specific toilet area, so that needs to maintained  regularly. They also mark their spaces with scent and do not like that to be disturbed. Dunnarts tend to hide for long periods of time.

This link gives more detail about dunnarts as pets.
http://mc2.vicnet.net.au/home/msov/shared_files/Dunnart_Fact_Sheet.pdf


This clip is rather interesting and comes from WWF.


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