Perameles nasutalong-nosed bandicoot

Geographic Range

East coast of Australia

Habitat

Found in rainforest, wet and dry woodlands, and sometimes in more open areas with little ground cover.

Physical Description

Head and body length 310-425 mm; tail length 120-155 mm.

Both the muzzle and ears are long and pointed. Fur is grayish brown on the dorsal side, and creamy on the ventral side. The forefeet and the top of the hindfeet are also creamy white. The tail is hairy. Unlike some other bandicoots, there is little or no barring on the rump. The pouch of bandicoots opens towards the rear of the mother. In bandicoots, the second and third toes on the hindfeet are syndactylous (joined), and the fourth toe is the main toe on the foot. The joined second and third toes are used in grooming. (Nowak, 1991; Strahan, 1995)

  • Range mass
    850 to 1100 g
    29.96 to 38.77 oz
  • Average basal metabolic rate
    1.763 W
    AnAge

Reproduction

The gestation period of the long-nosed bandicoot is quite short, about 12.5 days. There can be 1-5 young in a litter, with the usual number being 2 or 3. Bandicoots have a placental structure (but it lacks the villae in the placenta of placental mammals), and the young remain attached to this by umbilical cords for some time after birth, until the young begin suckling on teats in the pouch. Young are weaned at about 60 days, and the mother may have the next litter only a few days after the previous one is weaned. (Nowak, 1991; Strahan, 1995).

  • Key Reproductive Features
  • gonochoric/gonochoristic/dioecious (sexes separate)
  • sexual
  • Average number of offspring
    2.7
    AnAge
  • Average gestation period
    12 days
    AnAge
  • Average age at sexual or reproductive maturity (female)
    Sex: female
    135 days
    AnAge

Lifespan/Longevity

  • Average lifespan
    Status: captivity
    5.6 years
    AnAge

Behavior

Perameles nasuta is solitary and mainly nocturnal. During the day, these animals usually stay in their nests, which are shallow holes holes in the ground that are lined with grasses and other plant material. When foraging, P. nasuta digs conical holes with its forefeet. It feeds by inserting its snout into these holes and searching for food. At night, the long-nosed bandicoot can be quite active, often traveling at a running pace. (Nowak, 1991; Strahan, 1995)

Communication and Perception

Food Habits

Perameles nasuta is mainly insectivorous, although it also eats some plant material, and will occasionally eat worms, mice, and lizards. (Nowak, 1991; Strahan, 1995).

Economic Importance for Humans: Negative

The long-nosed bandicoot will burrow in lawns, gardens, and agricultural fields, and so is considered by some to be a pest.

(Nowak, 1991)

Conservation Status

Perameles nasuta is relatively common within its range, particularly in coastal woodlands. (Nowak, 1991; Strahan, 1995).

Contributors

Kate Teeter (author), University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, Phil Myers (editor), Museum of Zoology, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor.

Glossary

Australian

Living in Australia, New Zealand, Tasmania, New Guinea and associated islands.

World Map

bilateral symmetry

having body symmetry such that the animal can be divided in one plane into two mirror-image halves. Animals with bilateral symmetry have dorsal and ventral sides, as well as anterior and posterior ends. Synapomorphy of the Bilateria.

chemical

uses smells or other chemicals to communicate

endothermic

animals that use metabolically generated heat to regulate body temperature independently of ambient temperature. Endothermy is a synapomorphy of the Mammalia, although it may have arisen in a (now extinct) synapsid ancestor; the fossil record does not distinguish these possibilities. Convergent in birds.

forest

forest biomes are dominated by trees, otherwise forest biomes can vary widely in amount of precipitation and seasonality.

motile

having the capacity to move from one place to another.

native range

the area in which the animal is naturally found, the region in which it is endemic.

rainforest

rainforests, both temperate and tropical, are dominated by trees often forming a closed canopy with little light reaching the ground. Epiphytes and climbing plants are also abundant. Precipitation is typically not limiting, but may be somewhat seasonal.

sexual

reproduction that includes combining the genetic contribution of two individuals, a male and a female

tactile

uses touch to communicate

References

Nowak, R. 1991. Walker's Mammals of the World. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.

Strahan, R. 1995. The Mammals of Australia. Chatswood, NSW, Australia: Reed Books.