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Aussie Animal Magic

Focusing on Native Wildlife

Possum Stories

 This page has some photos and stories of just a few of the possums I have had in care.  There are two different species of possum featured here - the two most common in this area - brushtail possums and ringtail possums.  They are entirely different to hand rear.  Brushtails are by far the more hardy species and can be successfully hand reared from less than 50 grams.  Ringtails however are an entirely different matter and anything under 50 grams is extremely difficult to hand raise.  Both species are endearing in their own way.  I find little ringtails cuter but brushtails have much more personality.  However saying that,  I don't think I have a favourite.

 

Baby Apollo

  Bailey

 

Bailey was a unusual colour for a brushtail possum - more orange than the normal silver-grey colour.  He was around the 100 gram mark when he arrived after being found in a warehouse on his own.  He was very cold and miserable but it didn't take him long to settle into his new home. 

He made steady progress and was fully weaned at around 600 grams and living in a big cage outside.  After a couple of months in the cage he suffered some sort of aneurysm and was unable to balance at all. 

The vet gave him a course of steroids to see if that would help, initially it did but after another week the same thing happened again and I had to make the difficult decision to have him put to sleep as he really had no quality of life and would have been unable to be released back to the wild. 

It was a very sad decision to make but the right one.

 

 Baby Bailey

  Jarrko

Jarrko was only 40 grams when his mother came into care.  She was extremely sick and unfortunately died after a couple of hours.

His eyes remained closed and he had no fur for three months.  He was an easy possum to raise, giving me no cause for concern at any stage.

Jarrko was in care for over 8 months and he grew quickly and at almost 2 kilos in weight, he was ready for release.  He went to a friend's property where there was a box in a tree and he continued to have food provided for a couple of weeks until he was ready to make his own way in the world.  It gives me the greatest thrill to know that we were able to give him a chance at life.

Baby Jarrko - 40 grams

Jarrko - all grown up

 

Clover

This is Clover, a brushtail possum.  She was quite big when she came into care having fallen off her mother's back in the middle of a school assembly.  She settled in quite well considering her age and was quite a character.  Below are a series of photographs taken when she was released.

 

 Wattle

Wattle arrived about in mid July 2003 after being found crying beside her dead mother on a dark road.  She only weighed 94 grams and my thanks go to the young man who stopped his car and picked her up as she wouldn't have survived very long in the cold.  She didn't take to the bottle as most baby brushtail possums do and it took quite a few weeks before she settled down.  By mid September she weighed 270 grams.

 

Wattle lived in a cage at the bottom of the garden for about 6 months getting prepared for release.  She weighed around 900 grams and still liked to climb all over me when I delivered her food each day. 

 

Wattle was successfully released in

April 2004!

 

 


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