Victoria has three Dunnart or ‘marsupial mouse’ species. The White Footed Dunnart inhabits higher rainfall and coastal areas from coastal tussocklands to taller forests and is found locally on the Otway fringes. It is noticeably bigger and plumper than the ‘house mouse’, and more beautiful. Its fur is luxuriant and its ears and eyes are bigger.
This nocturnal creature builds bark nests in hollow logs, fallen timber, or tree hollows. It eats mainly insects, but also some small reptiles, and lives for about a year. In early spring the female bears up to ten young that live in her pouch for approximately eight weeks.
Illustration: Mark Trinham