Sugar gliders are not only super cute possums, but they’re also widely interesting too! From their sleeping and eating habits, to their life cycle and lifespan, there’s not a dull fact surrounding the sugar glider.
These tiny marsupials are native to Australia, they get their name from little flaps of skin they have, which come in handy when they start gliding.
These little creatures tend to live in colonies of around 20-40 individuals and the youngsters will leave their colonies at around 10 months old to start their own colony. Pretty interesting, right?
There’s over 40 species of sugar glider, and they can be found in New Guinea, Australia, Indonesia and other islands that surround these countries.
These possums have so many unique characteristics about them that make them one of the most interesting animals around.
If you want to know more about sugar gliders, then you’re in the right place. We’re going to be discussing some information and facts about these little marsupials(see also: Quick Facts About Marsupials (Facts May Surprise You)) that you may not know!
Sugar Glider Facts And Information
You’ll mainly find these small, omnivorous, arboreal and nocturnal marsupials living in Australia, but they can also be found around Indonesia, New Guinea and other surrounding islands.
They tend to spend most of their time in trees since they’re such good climbers, it also makes for a good place to catch insects which is their favorite prey, but they also eat nectar, sap and some fruits.
The Appearance Of A Sugar Glider
On first glance, you’ll notice that a sugar glider is very cute, they have big wide eyes with tiny little pointy ears, they have a similar appearance to mice, or squirrels (Also check out Types Of Squirrels Native To The U.S).
The most interesting part about their appearance isn’t their eyes or ears, it’s actually the special flaps on skin they have that connect their front legs all the way to their back legs, which allows them to glide effortlessly.
Sugar gliders tend to get mixed up with flying squirrels, but a sugar glider is very distinctive, with most of them having mostly gray fur, with white underbellies and a big black stripe on their heads.
The Habitat Of A Sugar Glider
Since sugar gliders are arboreal, you’ll tend to see them high up in the trees, as this is where they prefer to hang out.
Because of this, they tend to reside in cool, dense forests, mainly in the mountains, but they can also be found in coastal areas, more specifically near sources of water.
Sugar gliders differ from a lot of possums in the way that they can tolerate colder temperatures much better than most.
Since these creatures have the unique ability to glide, they can rest in their nests for most of the day high up in the trees, and when it comes to the night, they can glide down to food sources and bring it back for the young.
The Diet and Hunting Behavior Of A Sugar Glider
Sugar gliders will usually opt for insects to eat, but they will also go for fruits, sap, nectar and other small mammals. Their unique hiding ability also allows them to keenly prey on small mammals, and medium-sized birds, so they’re pretty efficient.
Since the sugar glider is a marsupial, it of course has a pouch to keep its young in.
This comes in handy since the sugar glider attracts a lot of predators due to its high-protein diet, so it’s an excellent way to keep their young safe as they forage and explore.
The Reproduction Of A Sugar Glider
The reproductive system of a sugar glider is very interesting. The males have two penises whilst females have their reproductive tract divided into two parts, and this is for a very good reason.
The first half of the females’ reproductive tract is used to store sperm and the second is where their eggs are then fertilized.
Once the eggs have been fertilized, they will then make their way to the pouch, which is where they stay until the baby is ready to be born. Once the babies are born, they will stay in their mother’s pouch for around 4 months.
The Gliding Ability
We’ve already talked about the sugar gliding having this unique gliding ability, but this is actually key to their survival and what makes them stand out so much.
This gliding ability is created by a membrane on their back legs, helped on by their tail and a flap of skin on the back of their head.
The concave area helps to give them a push when they jump, and this bit of skin actually unfolds and stiffens as the sugar glider jumps, which gives them an even bigger lift.
Can A Sugar Glider Be A Pet?
Sugar gliders can make excellent companions, and they can even be trained to interact and come out during the day.
They are very different from the usual pets you may be used to, since they like to leap and glide around, so there’s never a boring moment with a sugar glider.
As long as you understand their species, give them ample space to roam and glide around in and make sure that they have a friend, as they’re very social creatures, a sugar glider would make for an excellent and exciting pet in your home.
Not only are sugar gliders super cute, but they are one interesting creature too! There are so many facts about these cute marsupials that this article would go on forever.
Their main unique ability is obviously their ability to glide, which is very unique in the animal kingdom and the fact that they make for excellent pets too is just a bonus!
Just remember, if you are thinking about keeping a sugar glider as a pet, that you understand their species and have experience with them and that they have ample space to roam and glide freely.
As long as they feel safe and comfortable with you, they’ll definitely show affection back.