Bare-tailed Woolly Opossum

Bare-tailed woolly opossumThe Bare-tailed woolly opossum (Caluromys philander), is a mammal aptly named for its hairless, prehensile tail.

Native to Bolivia, Brazil, French Guiana, Guyana, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago, and Venezuela, the Bare-tailed woolly opossum is primarily found in arboreal habitats, usually neotropical forests. This nocturnal animal spends its days resting in the canopy of trees, constructing leaf nests in tree hollows, and foraging at night for food.

The Bare-tailed woolly opossum is a New World marsupial, not to be confused with the Australian marsupial, although both are in the same subclass. The woolly opossum weighs in at less than two-thirds of a pound (.29 kg) and averages eight inches (20 cm) in length. Its tail can be twice as long as its body.

When it comes to diet, Bare-tailed woolly opossums will eat any fruit or flower that they can find. These "food opportunists" will select plants based on availability, rather than nutritional value, and will forage through the canopy of trees looking for easy plants to eat. To grasp a hard-to-reach fruit, the woolly opossum sometimes hangs by its long tail. They also eat seeds, insects, and small invertebrates.

Despite a life span of only three years, breeding does not begin until the female is at least one year old. Gestation is short, usually 14 days or less, with young born premature.
An average litter size is four to six. Females can have up to three litters per year but this greatly depends on the availability of food. The less food sources, the less litters per year. The young remain in the mother’s pouch for about 80 days before beginning a nursing phase for an additional month. Although the Bare-tailed woolly opossum is a solitary creature, rarely interacting with its own species, the mother foregoes her usual nocturnal activities to nurse her young. Young are then ready leave the nest at about 130 days of age.

Due to a relatively stable population, the Bare-tailed woolly opossum is not considered endangered. However, its population is decreasing.

Keywords: white , prehensile tail

The Bare-tailed woolly opossum is listed as Near Threatened (LR/nt), is close to qualifying for or is likely to qualify for a threatened category in the near future, on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species

Namings for the baretailed woolly opossum
A young / baby of a baretailed woolly opossum is called a 'joey'. The females are called 'jill' and males 'jack'.
Bare-tailed woolly opossum habitats
Forest and Subtropical / Tropical Dry forest
Some facts about the
Woolly opossum

Adult weight : 0.35 kg (0.77 lbs)

Maximum longevity : 9 years

Female maturity :304 days

Gestation : 24 days

Weaning : 100 days

Litter size : 5

Interval between litters : 166 days

Weight at weaning : 0.011 kg (0.0242 lbs)

Source: AnAge, licensed under CC


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