Sugar Gliders

Sugar Gliders

Showing Gliding  Membrane

Showing Gliding Membrane

A QUICK FACT SHEET

BY: JILL M. PATT, DVM

NATURAL ENVIRONMENT:
Australia – woods/forests, Nocturnal

LIFESPAN: 12+ years

REPRODUCTION: Marsupial

Females has a pouch with 2 teats for nursing their young. The female gives birth to a very underdeveloped joey which then climbs up and into the pouch latching onto the nipple. Typically 2 young are produced and a female will often give birth twice in a year. The gestation is very short lasting only 16 days but the young will spend 70 days in the pouch. Young are considered independent at 16 weeks but will remain with the family unit.  Sexual maturity occurs at approximately 1 year in males and between 7 months and 1 year in females.

Photo from Backyard Buddies

SEXING: Females have a mid-abdominal pouch

Males have a pre-penile scrotum

Sugar Glider Male Anatomy

Sugar Glider Male Anatomy

HOUSING: Gliders are social animals and should never be kept without at least one other glider in their enclosure.  A large cage is needed to allow these athletic animals to explore. Bird cages are frequently utilized for good bar spacing for grasping and climbing. Larger is better, but ensure that the screen is small enough to safely keep your glider in the cage. A sleeping pouch and hide box are needed as are a variety of perches for climbing. Parrot toys can be provided for additional stimulation as can a rodent wheel.

The following housing photos are courtesy of David Rich, rph and show a truly optimal environment for a sugar glider family. Accessories include a wheel, many hide pouches, a nest box, and many areas to climb and forage.

Environmental Enrichment

Room to Glide & Forage

The Nest Box

DIET: Diet is extremely important for sugar gliders and an improper diet can literally kill your glider. I recommend one of the 2 options below for providing the best nutrition for your pet. As with any exotic pet, it is important that you research and understand the needs of your pet both in the wild and in captivity.

Photo from: http://fnpw.org.au/Backyard_Buddies/B-mail_August_08.html

Photo from: http://fnpw.org.au/Backyard_Buddies/B-mail_August_08.html

OPTION 1:

50% Protein:

insects, hardboiled egg with shell, newborn mice, lean meat, high quality cat food, monkey chow

50% Sugars/gums:

fresh nectar, maple syrup, honey, acacia gum, gum Arabic, commercial lory diet, Gliderade

Optimal Sugar Glider Environment, Courtesy of David Rich, rph

Optimal Sugar Glider Environment, Courtesy of David Rich, rph

 

OPTION 2:

50% Leadbeaters Mix

150 ml warm water
150 ml honey
1 shelled hard boiled egg
25 grams high protein baby cereal
1 teaspoon vitamin supplement

50% Commercial Insectivore diet
Mazuri® Insectivore Diet
Zupreem Omnivore Diet

Back Camera OPTION 3:

Successful Diet of:
Owner/Breeder David A. Rich, rph

High Protein Wambaroo Diet w/Glideraide twice weekly
Variety of Insects fresh/live & canned
Fresh Fruits
Commercial Sugar Glider Diet w/Eucalyptus (EN)

See http://www.exoticnutrition.com for HPW diet. (EN)

TREATS: Small amounts of fresh fruits, vegetables, baby food, and dairy products can be offered.

SUPPLEMENTS: A combination of a vitamin and mineral supplement such as Rep-Cal & Herptivite should be sprinkled over food. The calcium supplement should be phosphorus free.

WATER: Clean/fresh water should be available at all times. A water bottle is typically provided.

MEDICAL CONCERNS: Hind limb paralysis syndrome, Nutritional disorders, Obesity, Cataracts Trauma, Respiratory disease, Parasites, Gastrointestinal disease, Stress-related disease, Pouch disorders, Dental disease

FURTHER INFORMATION:

Sugar Glider Net: http://sugarglider.net/

Mazuri Insectivore Diet: http://www.mazuri.com/

Food Supplies from Exotic Nutrition

Gliderade: http://www.exoticnutrition.com/Glider-Supplements.htm

Rep-Cal Herptivite: http://www.reptilesupply.com/product.php?products_id=29

LLL Reptile:  http://www.lllreptile.com

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