Two rescue gliders with joeys in pouch

Posted By: lmw142

Two rescue gliders with joeys in pouch - 01/06/15 05:40 AM

Hi! This is going to be a longer post, because I believe some background is necessary for you guys to give proper advice.

I have posted a couple of times before about how I rescued 4 gliders from a friend who could no longer care for them. Unfortunately, he had been caring for them with instructions he got from their previous owner, who was not very knowledgeable.

There are two females and two males. They are all brothers and sisters. The original owner still has their father, and the mother passed away, probably due to dietary deficiencies, since they were bred back to back and on a pellet only diet.

When I agreed to rescue these four I was told that the males were not sexually mature yet. I agreed to take them, planning on letting them acclimate to new surroundings, then getting them neutered before they became mature.

When I went to pick them up it was very clear that they were already sexually mature, they both had very prominent bald spots and scent glands on their chests, and their testicles had descended. I took them anyway, knowing that there was a possibility that the females had already been impregnated.

I immediately separated the boys from the girls when I got them home, and got the boys neutered soon after. They are all back together now after the ten day waiting period after they were neutered.

Last week I noticed a marble sized bump on one side of Mary's pouch, and I knew we had a baby on the way. Then a couple nights ago I noticed two slightly smaller bumps on Coconut. So it seems we are going to have a few joeys soon, as long as everything goes well.

I have been doing all the research I can, and I know that there is a high chance that they will be rejected if there are defects the gliders know about, since they are inbred. I obviously will be keeping these joeys if they survive, I will not risk even giving away an unhealthy glider. I am trying to find a jeweler's scale to weigh them once they are out of pouch (any suggestions would be nice). I have read about joey development, and I think I have a fairly good understanding of what to expect.

There are a few questions I have not been able to find the answers too. First of all, I feed BML. I have read something about a "joey BML", but that seems to be for rejected joeys. So my question is, do I have to feed them anything special when they are getting weaned, or do I just kind of let the parents handle it if they seem to be taking care of them?

As you may have noticed, I have two males and two females, meaning there are two potential fathers, and I have no idea which combination of potential parents made which joeys, so I cannot separate them. Any advice on how to deal with that? It looks like my only option may be to keep them all together and watch very closely.

Third, and I think last question (for now), I use sleeping pouches, and I have moved their pouch lower in the cage to prevent a long drop if the joeys were to fall. I have read that some people don't think pouches are great for breeding, since they don't have a solid floor and the joeys may get trapped under the adults. With having four adults together already, I was a little worried about that. Should I switch to a nest box for awhile, or should the pouch be ok?

Thank you for reading all of that, and thanks in advance for your advice smile
Posted By: CandyOtte

Re: Two rescue gliders with joeys in pouch - 01/06/15 06:23 PM

Congratulations on giving these gliders a great home.

While the situation is not ideal, I would play it by ear and just see how things go with the colony dealing with the new joeys when they come OOP.

There are other options for feeding rejected joeys if something should happen. If you have not read Suz' page on the subject you may want to look it over and have supplies on hand should you need them.

I think of having all the supplies on hand a bit like carrying your umbrella - If you have it - chances are it will not rain but the one day you leave it home - you will get caught in a storm.

Pouches are fine even with gliders breeding in a colony. I have a pair of gliders that continued to share the family pouch with new joeys and their older (neutered) sons with out a problem.

You might want to get pouches that are a bit larger and have at least square corner bottoms to give the nursing moms a bit more room. Hanging Fleece cube pouches or a pouch that has a multi-layer flat bottom to keep the pouch more open when all the gliders share space might be good as well.

Until the joeys do come OOP you might keep at least two pouches in the cage to see if the gliders choose to 'pair-up' with one male and female consistently staying together. If they do, they you could leave two pouches in the cage. If all 4 gliders are always sharing the same sleeping pouch even when you are beginning to see the moms let the joeys hang out of the pouch for grooming etc before they detach, then you will probably want to keep using one large pouch so there is no chance a joey might be left alone in an extra pouch without a parent to keep him warm.

Good luck with your expanding colony. Family colonies are fun to watch the interactions. Joeys learn so much riding or following the adults around.
Posted By: Feather

Re: Two rescue gliders with joeys in pouch - 01/06/15 08:45 PM

Candy has given you some good advise. Please keep us posted on your upcoming joeys.
Posted By: lmw142

Re: Two rescue gliders with joeys in pouch - 01/07/15 12:32 AM

Thank you for the advice! I have read Suz' page, and I have it bookmarked in case I need it. I have oral syringes already. I am definitely going to get a milk replacer on hand so I'm ready if hand feeding is necessary. I do have large 'colony sized'pouches with boxed corners. I will try two pouches for now and see how it goes, but they usually all stick together.I will definitely give updates as things progress!
Posted By: GliderNursery

Re: Two rescue gliders with joeys in pouch - 01/07/15 01:42 AM

If the joeys do not get rejected, then you don't need any special food for them. They will naturally begin eating their parent's food when they get to be around 4-5 weeks old.
Posted By: lmw142

Re: Two rescue gliders with joeys in pouch - 02/22/15 05:20 PM

Mary's baby came oop yesterday! It is a girl, and so far the parents are taking great care of her.
Posted By: CLo1227

Re: Two rescue gliders with joeys in pouch - 02/25/15 12:58 PM

Congrats. I'm happy everything is going well so far smile
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