Bookmarkable URL:http://hdl.handle.net/10217/53498

Scientific Classification

Kingdom:Animalia
Phylum:Chordata
Class:Mammalia
Order:Dasyuromorpha
Family:Dasyuridae
Genus:Phascogale
Genus species:Phascogale tapoatafa

Animal Characteristics

Head-Body Length:14.8-26 cm
Weight:106-311 g
Identification:The brush-tailed possum has grizzled gray upperparts with cream or white undersides. It has a black 'bottle brush' tail with long hairs.
Habitat:Open forests
Diet:Carnivore: insects, centipedes, spiders, small mammals
Reproduction:The breeding season is from mid-May to July. After a gestation period of 30 days, the female gives birth to over eight young, even though she only has eight teats. As the offspring nurse, the mammary area develops a fleshy rim that completely encloses them in the pouch. They remain there for seven weeks. By 20 weeks, the babies have been weaned. Female phascogales can live for three years in the wild. Males die soon after breeding.
Brush-tailed phascogale are mainly solitary but may occasionally share a nest.
Behavior:Phascogales forage in trees at night. When they feel threatened, they will tap their front feet against the bark.
Status:No special status
Interesting Facts:Home ranges may include as many as 20 separate nests. Owls, foxes, and cats are the most common predators of the brush-tailed phascogale.

Other Information

Geographic:Northern Australia
Southwestern Australia
Southeastern Australia
Date:1964-12 Subjects:marsupial
Brush-tailed phascogale
Dasyuridae
Dasyuromorphia
Marsupials
Mammals
Vertebrates
Chordata