Husbandry and breeding of the Dibbler Parantechinus apicalis at Perth Zoo



The Dibbler Parantechinus apicalis is a small, carnivorous marsupial. Between 1996 and 1998 a recovery plan was initiated because the species is Endangered in its natural range. In 1997 Perth Zoo started breeding P. apicalis to study the behaviour of the species and to provide captive-bred animals for a colony introduced to Escape Island, Jurien Bay, Australia. By 2001, 83 captive-bred Dibblers and five wild-born founders were released to this site. The husbandry protocols, reproductive behaviour, and birth and development of young P. apicalis are described in this article.