click for info on pic


Home Page LEADBEATER'S POSSUM is a shy small, highly agile (making breathtaking leaps from tree to tree), nocturnal (Night time) marsupial (a pouched mammal), restricted to the tall eucalypt forests of Central Victoria, Australia.

Possums are marsupials a type of mammal that feed and protect their young in a pouch. These small creatures love to climb and frolic in trees, using their tails as a fifth hand and/or to help them balance as they climbs, run and jump.
They are usually covered in fur and sharp claws and strong fingers help them in climb The 23 species of possums found in Australia are found in various habitats ranging from North Queensland Rainforest (eg Cuscus) to Southern Eucalypt forest (eg Leadbeater's) to even adapting to our Urban forest of Houses, power lines etc (eg. Common Brushtails)
Possums of Australia Link


click here for info LOCATION / HABITAT
The Leadbeaters Possum location is confined to the mountain ash forests (type of Eucalypt) of the central highlands of the state of Victoria 2 hours north of the states capital city of Melbourne (between Healesville, Marysville and Mt Location (in RED) Baw Baw).
This pocket of forest which measures only 60 km x 80 km, is a very wet place, with an annual rainfall of over 2000 mm and occasional falls of snow.

Even in Earlier days the Leadbeater's Possum was rare, with Sir Frederick McCoy the first European to capture and describe this particular breed of possum in 1867 By 1909 the Species was thought to be extinct and there were no more sightings for over 50 years until the species was rediscovered near Marysville in 1961
Today it is thought there is less than 4000 individual Leadbeaters Possums left, and there is now an exerted effort to study and understand this extremely rare marsupial

click for info on pic The length of Leadbeater's Possum body is about
16 -18cm and with its club-shaped tail being of similar length the animal is 35-40cm
from its nose to its tailtip.
An adult Leadbeaters Possum weighs between 100-170 grams, (usually around 120-130g) but their weight changes depending on the season
Soft, dense fur covers the body and like most possums the Leadbeater's colouring varies. Though its underside is usually pale grey, its upper and side fur can range from grey to brown.
The Leadbeater has a prominent black stripe along its back
The face is quite uniquely marked as can be seen
Possum makes many types of calls, 2 being of prominence
1) repeated "alarm-hiss" made when a possum is fighting or being threatened.
2) High pitched staccato call when territorial fighting with other Leadbeater's possums
Other calls are mainly for communication between individuals

Leadbeaters Possums often live in colonies of up to eight animals sharing a communal nest of shredded bark in the hollow centre of very large and old trees, six to thirty metres above ground. These possums spend almost 75% of their time in the nest

Cricket Leadbeaters Possums feed on insects such as crickets, spiders beetles
(which come from either under the bark of Eucalypts
or feeding on nearby foliage).
They also consume sap and gum from trees as well as a insect secretion called "Honeydew"

click for info on pic The Leadbeater's Possum has 2 breeding times April to June and October to December producing 1-2 young in a litter. Like all marsupials, its young are born blind and naked and they crawl into their mothers pouch and attach themselves to a nipple. The young Leadbeaters Possum remains in their mother's marsupial pouch for roughly 3 months Female young are forcibly dispersed (ejected) from the nest after 10 months (upon reaching sexual maturity) and the male young disperse after 15 months. It is thought that the Leadbeaters Possum lifespan is up to 10 years though not many individuals over the age of 5 have been recorded.

click for info on pic There is 2 main problems facing the Leadbeater's Possum
1) The Leadbeater's Possum likes to nest in the hollows of Old trees and there are very few of these old trees due to massive bushfires (Wild fires) in 1939.
Re-growth of trees since the fires of 1939 need 200 years to become suitable nesting sites for the Possums.
So as these "old-growth" trees collapse there is no suitable age trees "maturing" into possible nesting sites.
Without nests, the possums are unable to survive.
2) 75% of the Possums habitat range is timber-production forest, with the tall, straight trees in the forests favoured by Leadbeater's Possum, also favoured for the production of timber and woodchips.

Australian Fauna - The Leadbeaters Possum
The Likelihood of The Leadbeaters Possum in the Strzelecki State Forest

Ants (Green Tree Ant).... Bandicoot (Long Nosed).... Bilby.... Bogong Moth.... Bottlenose Dolphin.... Bridled Nailtail Wallaby.... Brolga.... Cassowary.... Crocodile (Salt Water).... Cuscus.. Cuttlefish.. Dingo..... Dugong.... Eastern Snake Necked Turtle.... Echidna.... Emu.... Flying Fox (Grey-Headed).... Frilled Necked Lizard.... Furseal (Australian).... Galah.... Goanna.... Great White Shark.... Kingfishers & Kookaburras.... Koala.... Kowari.... Leadbeater's Possum.... Lumholtz Tree Kangaroo.... Lyrebird.... Magpie.... Mallee Fowl.... Numbat.... Owls.... Oystercatcher Parrot.... Pelican (Australian).... Penguin (Little or Fairy).... Phascogale.... Platypus.... Pygmy Possum.... Quokka.... Quoll (Spotted Tailed).... Rainbow Lorikeet.... Red Kangaroo.... Sawfish.... Sea Eagle (White Bellied).... Seadragons.... Seastars & Crown of Thorns.... Southern Right Whale.... Sugar Glider.... Sulphur Crested Cockatoo.... Tasmanian Devil.. Tasmanian Pademelon.... Thorny Devil.... Thylacine (Tasmanian Tiger).... Tree Frog (Blue Mountains).... Western Swamp Tortoise.... Wallaroo.... Wombats x 3.... Yabby....

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