The Mountain Pygmy Possum is a small animal that looks like a mouse. People are worried that the Mountain Pygmy Possum may go extinct because of the ski resorts and roads that have been built in the places where it lives.
Body length: 10 to 13 cm
Tail length: 13 to 16 cm
Weight: 30 to 60 g
(Source: Doubutsu Sekai-isan* Red Data Animals Kodansha) (*World Animal Heritage)
The Mountain Pygmy Possum lives in the mountainous parts of south-east Australia. It snows a lot here!
The Mountain Pygmy Possum eats things like insects, spiders, worms, seeds, and fruit.
During the winter, the Mountain Pygmy Possum hibernates under the snow. They don't sleep for the whole winter, though. They sleep for a few days and then wake up to eat the food, such as tree fruit, that they have collected in advance.
The places they live are being turned into ski resorts?!
The Mountain Pygmy Possum is a very rare animal. A living Mountain Pygmy Possum had not been discovered until the latter half of the 20th century! It looks like a mouse, but it belongs to a different family. The Mountain Pygmy Possum raises its children in a pouch on its stomach, just like kangaroos and koalas. The Mountain Pygmy Possum lives in cold places at an elevation of 1400 to 2000 meters. Ski resorts and roads are continuing to be built in the places where the Mountain Pygmy Possum lives. This has made people worry that the Mountain Pygmy Possum may go extinct.
The Mountain Pygmy Possum still has hope!
Fortunately, there are people who are trying to protect this small animal. Protection activities have started in Australia. For example, tunnels that the Mountain Pygmy Possum can use have been built under ski resorts and roads. Also, people are raising Mountain Pygmy Possums in places like zoos. If the environment where the Mountain Pygmy Possum lives improves, the Mountain Pygmy Possums that have been raised in zoos may be returned to their natural environment.
If you click the words above, you can see other animals related to this one.