Maximising nutritional status in captive marsupials

Hayley Stannard, Bronwyn M. McAllan, David Raubenheimer

Research output: Other contribution to conferencePresentation onlypeer-review


For marsupials there is a lack of detailed data on their nutritional needs. Nutrition is fundamental to health status, and inadequate nutrition can lead to deficiencies, poor health and poor reproductive output. Macronutrient composition plays a role in food intake of carnivores, in the wild and in captivity. Research has shown species such as dogs (Canis lupus familiaris) target for high lipid diets, while cats (Felis catus) and mink (Neovison vison) target for high protein and moderate lipid diets (one a percent energy basis). The largest extant Australian marsupial carnivore, the Tasmanian devil (Sarcophilus harrisii) and one of the smallest, the fat-tailed dunnart (Sminthopsis crassicaudata) have been studied to determine their macronutrient preferences. Preliminary analysis has shown devils prefer protein while dunnarts prefer lipid. Their choices can be related to their dietary preferences and physiological/behavioural processes.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Event12th International Mammalogical Congress - Perth Convention Centre, Perth, Australia
Duration: 09 Jul 201714 Jul 2017
Conference number: 12 (Conference website) (Abstract book) (Program)


Conference12th International Mammalogical Congress
Abbreviated titleAdvances in mammalogy in a changing world
OtherOn behalf of the International Federation of Mammalogists and the Australian Mammal Society Inc., the Organising Committee is pleased to invite you to attend the 12th International Mammalogical Congress, to be held in July 2017 in a unique part of the world: Perth, in Australia’s southwest.

At a time when the IUCN has identified that 25% of mammal species are at risk, the need for continued global mammal research and management strengthens. Addressing this need requires a strong inter-disciplinary knowledge base.

The International Mammalogical Congress is the premier international mammal conference, sponsored every four years by the IFM. It provides an important forum for professional mammalogists wishing to remain Wallabyupdated on the latest marine and terrestrial mammal conservation topics, research concepts and techniques. IMC12 will bring together the diverse global community of professionals and students in the field of mammalian biology and facilitate collaboration through our international network of practitioners.
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