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Female Cuscus

Female Cuscus
Photo Information
Copyright: James Parker (Jamesp) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1369 W: 9 N: 6334] (18906)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2007-09-13
Categories: Mammals
Camera: Canon 1D Mark II, Canon 70-200 f 2.8 L USM
Exposure: f/5.6, 1/400 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Fauna of NOTOGEA (Australian) Region, TN Favourites [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2007-09-29 10:37
Viewed: 16137
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 54
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
This female Cuscus was in a tree by a village and I suspect was a pet.

The Spotted Cuscus belongs to the Vertebrata phylum, Mammalia class, Marsupialia order and Phalangeridae family. It is a part of the possum family and is a marsupial. It is a nocturnal mammal found inn tropical forests and mangroves of New Guinea, the tip of Cape York in Australia and the Solomon Islands.

Cuscuses can be as tiny as a mouse or as large as a house cat, about 20 to 40 inches (40 to 80 cm). They normally weigh from 3 to 9 pounds (1˝ to 3˝ kg). Their have ears that are barely visible. They have thick fur coats that differ in color from white to gray, depending on their age and location. Their eyes can be yellow, orange or red while they normally have yellowish noses. The legs are normally reddish-brown to gray in color.

Cuscuses have tails longer than their bodies which are prehensile, making holding onto branches easy. The tails are curled at the end and, from about half way down the tail to the tip of the tail, there is no hair. Each foot has five toes; four with claws while the inner toe is an opposable clawless toe, much like the human thumb. The combination of their prehensile tail and opposable toe makes them good climbers. They spend most of their time in trees. Their diet ranges from plants to small animals. Some may also feed on nectar and insects.

The Cuscus lives in trees, occupying the same ecological niche as monkeys. Cuscuses resemble sloths in their low activity. They have not only a low body temperature but also a low metabolic rate, which means they are about as active as a lazy house cat!

The spotted Cuscus, being nocturnal, come out only at night. During the day they sleep curled on branches, hollow trees or heavy vegetation. They spend most of their time in a sitting position.

The male Cuscus, like the male tiger, scent marks their territory and guards it ferociously against other encroaching males. The term spotted is incorrect. The males actually has splotches of darker colors on its light colored fur, not spots. The female is usually a solid cream color.

Cuscus breeding occurs throughout the year. Gestation is is very short, at about two weeks. Typically, the female has only one baby which can live up to 11 years. The female may have up to three young because they have four teats in their pouch. The pouch is used to raise the young. When the baby Cuscus is ready to leave the pouch, its mother carries it on her back.

gracious, nglen, rousettus, marhowie, jaycee, vanderschelden, Adanac, cicindela, haraprasan, fartash, horia, lovenature, PaulH, uleko, JORAPAVI, Alex99, SunToucher, hester, GabrielaRuellan has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To angybone: PetsJamesp 1 09-30 22:49
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Critiques [Translate]

Hello James,
this is trully excellent photo of Cuscus!
perfect exposure and focus with sharpness, vivid colour and details
well composed and well seen
thanks you so much for the wonderful and useful notes

  • Great 
  • nglen Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2883 W: 30 N: 9683] (36145)
  • [2007-09-29 10:57]

Hi James. Went to the local lakes to day but i did not see one of these in the trees.what a strange looking animal. you have captured it with sharp focusing showing fine detail, and clear colours.I like the pose it looks as if he is looking at you. well done TFS. good notes too.

Hi james,
another great shot from Papua. I think that I had seen this species on Tom Flannery's famous book about mammals of New Guinea and Oceanic islands.
Very nice details, great sharpness. composition, colors superb. notes also useful and good. TFS
have a nice weekend.

  • Great 
  • joey Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1739 W: 224 N: 6872] (24909)
  • [2007-09-29 14:07]

Hi James,
what a weird looking thing! Looks like something from a Star Wars film.
+++ Great sharpness and detail defining every hair on its body. Good POV and composition.
--- Nothing :)
Well done,

  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2007-09-29 14:59]

Hi James,

A wonderful introduction to me of this animal. That is some face with those eyes and his tongue sticking out. Wonderful pose and he seems to have those eyes on you. Lovely colors, details and setting.


Hi James,
A wonderful image!!!
Never saw this Cuscus...
It is photographed very well; do like the light on its head.

  • Great 
  • Adanac Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1273 W: 1 N: 6188] (21378)
  • [2007-09-29 19:08]

Hello James,
Slendid image of this strange looking species, thanks too for the great note. Cheers my friend.

hello james,
nice portrait shot, liked the colours and the composition, well composed shot, goo ligting,
well done,
tfs & regards

Hi James
I have never seen a Cuscus!
just lovely compo and fine exposure under difficult conditions. The eyes are superb!

Hello James!
It is nice to see you new picture from new region! Especially so poorfly known like Papua New Guinea! And this creature looks really funny! I like its pose and general composition of the photo. Lovely colours and sharpness. Note is also very good and informative! It is really nice to see that you are back! ;>
Best greetings,

Are they commonly kept as pets?
What a fascinating creature. I've never seen or heard of this before. Thank you for showing us this beautiful little thing.
Excellent lighting - wonderful composition!

Hello James
Very intersting spiece too shoot,
Perfect pose ,BG and composition,
Fantastic colors and POV,Welldone.

Good Luck

  • Great 
  • gannu Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 988 W: 4 N: 3277] (14761)
  • [2007-09-30 9:02]

James, WOW what an image. I am seeing this for the first time and thanks for showing me this image. Lovely ganesh

  • Great 
  • arfer Gold Star Critiquer [C: 2731 W: 0 N: 0] (0)
  • [2007-09-30 9:21]

Hello James

Thanks for an informative post on this Cuscus.I must admit I knew very little of them before reading this.A well lit and focused shot with lovely colour saturation.I really like the pose and composition.Nicely done.TFS


Hello James,
Very nice shot.

  • Great 
  • horia Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2158 W: 224 N: 4749] (16656)
  • [2007-09-30 13:58]

Hi James

Good to see you again, my friend!
This is a great photo of a beautiful animal that we hardly get the chance to see a lot of.
The pose in whihc you captured it is terrific and also very natural and the rays of light shining on her face are giving extra attention to those lovely big round eyes.
Superb job!

Bravo and TFS

Hi James
You've captured a very unique looking mammal. I've never heard of a Cuscus before...now I know. Sharp and vivid colour, well composed and the Cuscus is giving you a nice frontal pose.
TFS Janice

  • Great 
  • Mana Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1772 W: 36 N: 5597] (18598)
  • [2007-10-01 0:32]

Hi James,
What a cute looking animal and you have captured a fantastic expression. Perfect lighting and expsoure and you have captured a fabulous pose. Very sharp image with lovely colours. I like the natural surrounding too. Excellent POV and very nicely composed. Kudos.

Hi James,
A beautiful and strange and completely new species for me. You have captured it very nicely with excellent details and POV. Thanks a lot for sharing.

Hi James
Very cute animal. Interesting shot. Sharpness is good. Also great natural surrounding. I was wondering about the contrast but now I think that it looks ok :-)
Best wishes

  • Great 
  • PaulH Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1137 W: 26 N: 3879] (13882)
  • [2007-10-01 8:29]

Hi James,
not quite sure what to make of this. Great shot, lovely pose and good exposure under what looks like quite tricky bright light. But it's the Cuscus that intrigues me...like most of the other people here, i've never seen anything like it. I'd give you 10 points for sheer novelty factor if i could. Very well done, looking forward to more.

  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2007-10-01 10:07]

Hello James,
What an interesting animal rarely shown to us. I like its pose up in the tree and the sharp details are fascinating - the face looks almost like that of a seal with big eyes!! Beautiful thick fur too and all very nicely captured. Well done!
TFS and regards, Ulla
P later

This is an amazing creature Jim! When I think that I have all seen in life, there is always something new to learn! I have never seen this animal before, what a look...! It looks like a mix between many species and even a Teletubbies :) This is an adorable capture of a stunning little one! Thanks so much, I have learned new things again :)

Hola James,
Fantástica toma de bella composición, con gran nitidez y detalles, excelente iluminación, saludos
José Ramón

  • Great 
  • Alex99 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4072 W: 133 N: 7096] (23735)
  • [2007-10-02 6:14]

Hi James.
First of all thanks for encourage. I estimate your interest so high.
This picture is superb at heist range. Composition and pictured scene are amazing. Lighting, colours and scenery are so rich and wonderful. Pose, expression of the animal face and its mood are reflected perfectly. Light BG is looked greatly too. May be I would prefer deeper DOF and more sharp tail but this is matter of taste. Bravo and best wishes.

Hi James,
Because of your heavy travelling I've seen many wonderful landscapes in countries I've never been and probably will never go to. Now you are showing me an animal I've never seen before. You are also showing it to me in a most wonderful photo. The light hitting the face is most beautiful and keeps my eye locked on it. The expression is ofcourse very sweet. I like the way you kept a shallow DOF to emphazise the face even more.

  • Great 
  • hester Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1515 W: 18 N: 3165] (11638)
  • [2007-10-02 12:37]

Hi James

I've never seen one of these before. It looks like an alien in a snowsuit. Very cute! I love the light here and the pose is great. Well focused, good DOF and nicely framed



exciting, never saw thisn one before, TFS Ori

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