Australian Mammals: Biology and Captive Management by Stephen Jackson

By Stephen Jackson

Winner of the 2004 Whitley Medal. Shortlisted within the Scholarly Reference component of the 2004 Australian Awards for Excellence in academic Publishing. This authoritative quantity represents a whole and accomplished consultant to the husbandry of Australian marsupials and different mammals. Australian Mammals: Biology and Captive administration dedicates a bankruptcy to every team of animals together with the platypus, the echidna, carnivorous marsupials, numbats, bandicoots and bilbies, koalas, wombats, possums and gliders, macropods, bats, rodents and the dingo. for every animal team the subsequent info is roofed: Biology Housing trap and discretion delivery vitamin Breeding man made rearing Behaviour and behavioural enrichment The ebook presents an entire literature evaluate of all recognized details at the biology of every crew of animals and brings details on their biology within the wild into captive events. additionally, for the 1st time, it presents useful instructions for hand-rearing, and has been widely reviewed by way of zookeepers and veterinarians to include the main up to date details and methods.

Australian Mammals: Biology and Captive administration offers sensible information for zoo-keepers, veterinarians, zoologists, researchers and scholars.

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Lactation appears to last about four months (Grant and Griffiths 1992; Carrick 1995; Holland and Jackson 2002). 12 Oestrous cycle and gestation and incubation periods The oestrous cycle of the platypus is unknown, however the gestation period is thought to last about 15–21 days based on an observed mating and the disappearance of the female (Holland and Jackson 2002). After she lays the eggs, the female incubates them by holding them against her belly with her tail, while she lies curled up in the nest chamber of the burrow.

5 Leg bands Leg bands are not recommended due to wearing on the skin and spur (in males) (Grant and Whittington 1991). 6. 1 Captive diet Captive platypus need a diet that caters for individual preferences in quantity and type of food, so it should be varied, nutritious, encourage natural foraging behaviours and minimize obesity. The diet should include as high a proportion of live food as possible. The next best alternative is food that is freshly frozen for storage purposes and thawed just before being offered to platypus.

Females appear to show reproductive behaviour after six years of age. There was a continuity of handlers. Platypus recognize individual people and behave differently when someone else takes over while one of the keepers is absent. For this reason, most institutions have a policy of having the same keeper working with their platypus. 8 Ability to breed every year Evidence from the wild suggests that female platypus do not normally breed every year (Grant et al. 1983). They showed that only 64% of females captured in the breeding season over a number of years were lactating.

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