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Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by Fodders, 11 Jun 2007.

  1. Fodders

    Fodders Well-Known Member

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    I'm Fodders, I live in Manchester and am very interested in marsupials especially Wombats. I enjoy going to different Zoos I dont get to go very often but when I do I enjoy it very much. I was introduced to the forum by Writhedhornbill and i am very glad that he did
     
  2. Writhedhornbill

    Writhedhornbill Well-Known Member

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    You also like wolverines, you didn't mention that!!!!

    Welcome, fodders!!!
     
  3. bongorob

    bongorob Well-Known Member

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    Hi Fodders.

    Writhedhornbill was responsible for me finding this forum. Like you, I am very glad that I did.

    I just came up with a list of Marsupials I know I have seen for definate in the UK.

    DASYUROMORPHIA
    Dasyuridae
    Kowari
    Tasmanian Devil

    DIPROTODONTIA
    Phascolarctidae
    Queensland Koala

    Vombatidae
    Forest Wombat

    Phalangeridae
    Common Brushtail Possum
    Spotted Cuscus
    Grey Ground Cuscus

    Potoroidae
    Long-nosed Potoroo
    Brush-tailed Bettong
    Rufous Rat Kangaroo

    Macropodidae
    Matschie's Tree Kangaroo
    Goodfellow's Tree Kangaroo
    Shaw Meyer's Tree Kangaroo
    Doria's Tree Kangaroo
    Quokka
    Red-bellied Pademelon
    Brush-tailed Rock Wallaby
    Swamp Wallaby
    Parma Wallaby
    Agile Wallaby
    Red-necked Wallaby
    Tammar Wallaby
    Western Grey Kangaroo
    Western Wallaroo
    Red Kangaroo
     
  4. Writhedhornbill

    Writhedhornbill Well-Known Member

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    I'm Guessing that the Wombats and Taz. Devils were at London?.....
     
  5. bongorob

    bongorob Well-Known Member

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    You guessed correctly. As were the kowari, koala and Shaw Meyer's tree kangaroo.

    I forgot to list Leadbeater's Possum, striped possum and pygmy featheertail glider (all London), and sugar glider (lots of places, but probably first at Chester)
     
  6. patrick

    patrick Well-Known Member

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    when you say "shaw meyer's tree kangaroo" you must be talking about shawmayeri subspecies of goodfellow's.

    thats the same race we keep here in australia, but interestingly i have never heard it referred to by this subspecies specific common name - and i've read a lot of books about tree-kangaroos!

    flannery writes that shawmayeri is a synonym for buergersi - a good thing for the breeding program as it means our animals are one and the same as many of the others in captivity.

    anyhow, to get to my question, since you listed both "shaw meyer's" and "goodfellow's" seperately i would be really keen to hear your observations of the two types. how different they appear etc...

    (sorry i'm a bit of a tree-roo fanatic myself;))
     
  7. bongorob

    bongorob Well-Known Member

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    I've checked my records and I have a photograph of Goodfellow's Tree Kangaroo at Blackpool Zoo taken in 1977. The animals I described as Shawmeyer's Tree Kangaroos were seen at London Zoo in 1985 and may have been the same ones because Blackpool no longer held this species by then,

    I have no photographs of the London specimens to compare the two forms, London labelled them as Goodfellow's (no subspecies), the International Zoo Yearbook listed them as D.g.buergersi.

    Blackpool Zoo was originally opened in 1972 by the local authority as a serious mainstream zoo. A municipal zoo in the UK is extremely rare. One of the zoo's ambitions was to build up a collection of marsupials but due to an apparent lack of interest from other collections nothing ever came of it.

    In the early 1980s they exhibited Müller's Forest Wallabies and Red-legged Pademelons. I never went to see them, though I do remember seeing Quokkas and Potoroos.

    I also quite like tree kangaroos, my enthusiasm is not shared by the EEP decision makers. Everyone in the UK seems to be going into Parma Wallabies and Western Grey Kangaroos.

    Sorry I can't help you furthur Patrick.
     
  8. patrick

    patrick Well-Known Member

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    thanks anyway bongorob. of the two species of tree kangaroos seen in zoos outside new guinea, neither are particularly common anywhere, especially in europe where they are very rare nowdays. the biggest population is probably the matschie's around 50 are in US zoos, but thats not much really.

    melbourne zoo has an excellent record with the goodfellows species and is clearly very proud of them - but nothing much is happening at currumbin - the only other zoo in australia in a breeding situation.

    there are plenty of australian marsupial species that are well adapted to cold climates like thouse found in europe. you guys need some mountain brushtail possums, tasmanian pademelons and more (tasmanian race) common wombats. at a guess eastern greys might be a little more cold tolerant also, since they are the most southernly distributed species.
     
  9. bongorob

    bongorob Well-Known Member

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    About three years ago a dead Virginia Opossum was found near Leek in Staffordshire (about 10 miles from where I live). No one knew where it had come from, but its injuries were caused by a dog. No one knew at first exactly what the animal was, the common consensus was that it was an very large rat. Eventually a spokesman from Stoke museum correctly identified it.

    The local paper contacted Chester Zoo for a comment. A spokeswoman said it could not possibly be an opposum because the are only found in hot climates. She was the press officer and had no knowledge of animals. Nevertheless the paper put all their faith in her statement (she was from a zoo so she must be right), disregarding the person from the natural history department of the museum.

    It remains a mystery to this day where the opossum came from, though there is a feral colony of red-necked wallabies living in the area. As you said Patrick marsupials can live in cold climates.
     
  10. Pertinax

    Pertinax Well-Known Member

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    I've seen Wallabies wild in Tasmania, on bleak clammy fog-bound moorlands e.g. in the Cradle Mountain National Park area and it is VERY similar climatically(and geographically?) to the places where they have formed feral colonies in UK- e.g. Staffordshire(are they on the Moors there?) and North Yorkshire- I think that colony died out?)

    What size is the Leek/Staffs group nowadays?
     
  11. Pertinax

    Pertinax Well-Known Member

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  12. Pertinax

    Pertinax Well-Known Member

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    Yellow-footed Rock Wallabies.

    Still on the subject of Wallabies- Yellow footed ones...

    Some years ago I saw photos of a big colony of Yellow-footed Rock Wallabies in a rocky enclosure at Adelaide Zoo. Is this colony still surviving/thriving and how many are in this group nowadays?

    I also saw this most attracive species for myself at either Melbourne or Taronga Pk, I can't remember which one but it was only a small group- pair or trio-at that time. Does this zoo still keep them nowadays and are they thriving.... or just surviving?
     
  13. bongorob

    bongorob Well-Known Member

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    They're still there, although they have become very hard to see, I would guess because of the increase in traffic and walkers, etc. I have never seen one.
     
  14. patrick

    patrick Well-Known Member

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    it depends on the species. virginia opossums live as far north as canada. north america gets ALOT colder than the UK which, as i'm sure you know is a bit of an anaomally in it weather patterns compared with equal latitude on mainland europe (you can thank the caribbean for that ;))...

    you should see the koalas we have down here in victoria (if you haven't already). much thicker furred and larger than the northern races you see in most overseas zoos. i imagine they can deal with some pretty cold weather for short periods.

    and like grant said - any cold temperate zoo should simply look to tasmania for inspiration if they want cold adapted plants and animals for their australian exhibits.
     
  15. ZYBen

    ZYBen Well-Known Member

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    THey are thriving and being released into the wild and being hadraised aqnd being used for cross fostering with brush footed rock wallabies
     
  16. patrick

    patrick Well-Known Member

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    melbourne used to have them, but they are now located, along with the recovery program for our indigenous brush-tailed rock wallabies, at the zoos sister institution heallesville sanctuary.

    monarto have heaps...
     
  17. ZYBen

    ZYBen Well-Known Member

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    yeaqh heap and heaps, there a little handraised one behind rthe scenes who is very freindly
     
  18. Pertinax

    Pertinax Well-Known Member

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    ;)
    Yes, I remember noticing how different they were from the smaller, shorter-furred ones further North from e.g. Queensland. Its the same rule as for some animal subspecies in the Northern Hemisphere- the further from the tropics, the larger the body size and thicker the coat e.g. Siberian/indian Tiger, Leopards etc. Its all about heat retention- I think there is a name for this biological 'law' but I can't remember it. Anyone?

    Glad to hear the Yellow-footed Rock Wallabies are doing so well. I guess they have had a bit of a turnaround...
     
  19. Rookeyper

    Rookeyper Well-Known Member

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    Virginia opossums do occur in the US in cold climates--I leave in northern Indiana and we have them everywhere. Id certainly gets cold here--last winter we had several days below 0 F. My dog once cornered on in my back yard on top of a very tall snow drift.
    Eastern grey kangaroos can tolerate fairly cold temperatures, but don't do well on ice at all! The don't know how to control those skis that they have as feet! We also had one female who sat out in a freak snowstorm and had a few inches of snow on her head when I saw her first thing the next morning.

    Elaine
     
  20. bongorob

    bongorob Well-Known Member

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    Quote from Fodders (sorry, still haven't got the hang of doing this quote thing)

    That's pretty classic too! Press Office(r)s in some zoos do have a lot to answer for sometimes. The ZSL one put out some pretty erroneous info when Gorilla Kingdom opened recently- how it was the first time the gorillas had 'seen the open sky since they were babies in Africa' A nice idea but totally untrue for all three of the animals- so where are they coming from...?

    One staff member at Chester Zoo used to inform everyone that Axolotls (which are kept in the Aquarium) were fish. She was the Education Officer.