Rare scaly-tailed possum caught in the Northern Territory for the first time

Rare scaly-tailed possum caught in the Northern Territory for the first time



For the first time, a rare scaly-tailed possum has been caught in the Northern Territory, indicating that private land protection is having a good impact, according to scientists.

The scaly-tailed possum, also known as the Wyulda, is a rock-dwelling marsupial with robust limbs and a “grippy” tail that it utilizes to reach for seeds, fruits, and flowers by hanging from branches and rock ledges.

During animal-trapping surveys in April and May, ecologists from the Australian Wildlife Conservancy (AWC) operating on Bullo River Station in the Northern Territory’s Victoria River region captured a possum.

Scaly-tailed possums are “secretive, cute weirdos” with an extraordinary ability to adapt to whatever area they reside in, according to Eridani Mulder, the senior ecologist who led the studies. The scales on their tails, she added, looked like little fingernails.

The species had only been seen in the Kimberley region of Western Australia and on low-resolution camera photos on the Bullo River property before the studies.

Lead Image: A scaly-tailed possum caught at Bullo River Station in the Northern Territory is the most easterly record of the species in Australia. Photograph: C Nest/Australian Wildlife Conservancy.


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