MARTIN Gabriel Mario
Observations on the captive behavior of the rare Patagonian opossum Lestodelphys halli (Thomas, 1921) (Marsupialia, Didelphimorphia, Didelphidae)
MARTIN, G. M.; UDRIZAR SAUTHIER, D. E.
WALTER DE GRUYTER & CO
Lugar: Berlin; Año: 2011 vol. 75 p. 281 - 281
We describe the behavior in captivity of the rare Patagonian opossum (Lestodelphys halli) from five individuals captured at three localities, which were kept alive in glass terraria for different periods of time (between 2.53.5 months). During our observations we found that L. halli can climb and jump well, has a prehensile tail-tip which can hold the body suspended for several seconds, powerful grasping hind feet and the ability to dig. Feeding preferences of meat (mainly raw) and live animals (i.e., mice, lizards and beetles) over vegetables or fruit was observed. We document the first records of torpor/hibernation for the species, its locomotion and exploration patterns and feeding postures. Resting/sleeping in L. halli is done with the body curled along a vertical axis and its head placed against the chest and between the hind legs, a posture different from previously reported American marsupials. Stereotyped behavior patterns (e.g., grooming) were observed and compared with other studied species, providing comparative information for further studies on New World marsupials.