Australian Animals

This is a chuditch or western quoll. His name’s Charlie and this photograph was taken on 7 July 2012 (four years and nearly two months ago). It’s one of the best photographs I’ve taken of him.

In captivity, a chuditch can live up to about five years. Charlie’s now way up there in quoll years and he’s definitely looking his age. He’s much more skinny and patchy-furred now, and sadly not as sociable.

Anyway, I’ve figured out how to rework the light in my old photos to more natural colours. Hope you enjoy seeing Charlie in part-colour. 🙂

Chuditch

The chuditch (from Noongar djoodidj) or western quoll is a predatory marsupial – a dasyurid. It is the only species of Australian quoll not currently on the threatened species list. The chuditch was originally found all the way across Australia but habitat loss and introduced predators have reduced its range to southwestern Australia.

Pretty much every photo or video I’ve ever taken of a chuditch has been at Perth Zoo in the nocturnal house. The enclosure is dimly lit in red, so the photos are processed to monochrome red.

Images by S J Bennett. Licensed under Creative Commons CC-BY 2.0

This is a chuditch or western quoll who possibly thinks he’s about to get fed. 

Here you can clearly see the bottom-heaviness of quoll physiology which lends itself to a loping “see-saw” run (like a chain of controlled jumps) with a lot of vertical movement on the hips.

You have to be aware of these things if you’re going to animate something, you know…

This is a northern quoll, very possibly a juvenile northern quoll.

Northern quolls are the largest known mammals to undergo semelparity, in this case male die-off. Much like the more infamous antechinus, northern quoll males go into a mating frenzy and die from exhaustion. This particular instinct can be suppressed with measure such as isolating the male from the relevant female pheromones, or giving him the snip. Or, as one antechinus researcher discovered, accidentally having their knackers ripped off while escaping from a trap.