This week’s patient is Sam.
Sam is an orphaned baby Squirrel Glider, and not to be confused with a Sugar Glider. Sam was found on the ground in Ormeau with no mum in sight, when he was rescued and dropped off to a local veterinary clinic to later be transferred to Currumbin Wildlife Hospital.
The Wildlife Hospital’s veterinarians gave Sam a full check over to determine if he had any injuries.
Thankfully he was in good health and did not require any kind of medication or treatment. However, he is not yet old enough to be released back into the wild, as he would most likely not survive by himself without his parents at such young age. Therefore, Sam will be placed in the safe hands of an experienced wildlife carer, who will raise him until he is old enough to be released back into the wild.
Squirrel gliders are small possums that have stretching skin membranes between their front and hind legs enabling them to glide through the air.
Squirrel gliders are often confused with the more common sugar glider. Squirrel gliders are larger than sugar gliders with a long and wide bushy tail, pointed face and brown-grey fur colour typically with a dark stripe down the middle of their back.
Squirrel gliders are omnivorous and nocturnal eaters. Their diet consists of primarily insects but they will often feed on pollen and nectar which are an important part of their diet.
Squirrel gliders are listed as common in Queensland, however vulnerable in NSW, threatened in Victoria and endangered in South Australia. The main cause of decline in the squirrel glider population is due to destruction of habitat and loss of trees to provide a suitable habitat and food source.