Gray Short-tailed Opossum - The Pocket Pet

Gray short-tailed opossumThe Gray short-tailed opossum (Monodelphis domestica) is a remarkable marsupial because it is one of the only marsupials where the females do not have a pouch. Their newborns just hang on the mother's teats. Due to the inadequacies of the functions of the newborn's immune system, scientists use them for cancer research and general immune system development. Short-tailed opossums are much like humans in the way that they can can develop skin cancer from sunlight alone. They can be found inhabiting or frequenting trees in South America in Bolivia, Brazil, and Paraguay. Measuring 6 - 8 centimeters (2.4-3.1 inches) in length and weighing in at about 60-150 grams, (2.1-5.3 ounces) this cute and furry creature makes for the perfect pocket sized pet for people keeping them.

Gray short-tailed opossums have a diet that mainly consist of insects due to their high need of protein, they will also eat a variety of fruit and vegetable matter. As a pet they are fed fruit, mealworms, and kitten chow. They have opposable toes and on their hind legs they have an opposable big toe that works much like the way a human thumb would work. They also use their tail as another limb. They have smooth pads on their toes and feet that enables them to climb up really smooth surfaces such as glass. Dogs and
Fortunately, the gray short-tailed opossum is not on the endangered species list. Short-tailed opossums live about 2 years in the wild and can live up to 3-4 years captive.

Interesting fact: The Gray short-tailed opossum was the first marsupial to have its genome sequenced.

Keywords: gray

The Gray short-tailed opossum is listed as Least Concern (LR/lc), lowest risk. Does not qualify for a more at risk category. Widespread and abundant taxa are included in this category, on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species

Namings for the gray shorttailed opossum
A young / baby of a gray shorttailed opossum is called a 'joey'. The females are called 'jill' and males 'jack'.
Bolivia, Brazil and Paraguay
Some facts about the
Shorttailed opossum

Adult weight : 0.105 kg (0.231 lbs)

Maximum longevity : 5 years

Female maturity :122 days

Male maturity : 122 days

Gestation : 15 days

Weaning : 53 days

Litter size : 9

Interval between litters : 53 days

Weight at weaning : 0.02 kg (0.044 lbs)

Body mass : 0.104 kg (0.2288 lbs)

Temperature : 32.85 °C (91.13 °F)

Source: AnAge, licensed under CC

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