Common Brushtail Possum with young at night

Common Brushtail Possum

The Common Brushtail Possum (Trichosurus vulpecula) is a semi-arboreal marsupial of the family Phalangeridae. It is native to Australia, and the largest of the possums. In New Zealand, where it was introduced in the 19th century, it is a major agricultural and conservation pest.

Like most possums, the Common Brushtail is nocturnal. In most Australian habitats, leaves of Eucalyptus are a significant part of the diet but rarely the sole item eaten. The tail is prehensile and naked on its lower underside. There are four colour variations: Silver Grey, Brown, Black and Gold.

It is the Australian marsupial most often seen by city-dwellers, as it is one of few that thrive in cities as well as a wide range of natural and human-modified environments. Around human habitations, Common Brushtails are inventive and determined foragers with a liking for fruit trees, vegetable gardens, and kitchen raids.

During the day, Common Brushtails sleep in a den in a hollow tree or any other convenient place, notably ceiling spaces that are not securely sealed. Although primarily arboreal and not found in places without trees to provide refuge, they spend a good deal of time on the ground. They are able to stand upright.

Source: - 26.06.2011

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