Australian sugar gliders, videos

This video is called Flying Mouse ~ Pygmy Feathertail Gliders.

Now, to slightly bigger relatives of these marsupials.

From daily The Guardian in Britain today:

I couldn’t resist sharing this video with you: today’s “Caturday” video features an adorable young sugar glider (known as a “joey”) practicing her gliding skills in front of a fan.

The sugar glider, Petaurus breviceps, is a small forest-dwelling marsupial native to the northern and eastern parts of Australia. They also occur in forests throughout New Guinea and on a number of nearby islands and island archipelagoes.

They superficially resemble a squirrel, although they are smaller and much, much cuter: they have extremely soft, dense grey fur with a charcoal grey stripe along their spine, creamy white fur on their underparts, large black eyes adapted for night vision, a pink nose and toes, and small rotatable ears. They are sexually dimorphic, with females being smaller than the males, and lacking the scent gland on the forehead. Females give birth to one or two babies (“joeys”) which then reside in her marsupium (pouch) located on her belly, for several months. Male sugar gliders are unusual because they are one of the few mammal species that provide parental care. This video gives you an idea of their physical size:

The physical character that gives sugar gliders their name is the fur-covered flap of skin along their sides — this skin flap is easily visible in the previous video.

When sugar gliders extend their legs, this flap of skin stretches out, allowing them to glide through the air from tree to tree, sometimes for long distances when it’s breezy. Here’s another video that provides low-motion footage of gliding sugar gliders (ignore the cheesy music):

Sugar gliders are arboreal possums, and possess a long, furred and weakly prehensile tail that acts as a climbing aid as they move throughout the trees, seeking out insects, nectar, tree sap, and fruits to dine upon. Sugar gliders are highly active and are nocturnal and live in colonies consisting of several adults and their young of the year. Although they can “bark”, they are generally silent, and communicate primarily by using odours and behavioural signals. And cuteness.

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