General Guide to Physiology, Behavior, and Interaction of the Sugar Glider

The following notes cover essential points about sugar glider physiology and basic behavior patterns. Use this information to better understand why your Sugar Glider (SG) is behaving in a particular way.

1. Information about the group or the colony is transmitted through the scents. If you introduce a new sugar glider into an existing cologne, it will most likely be scented by the dominant sugar glider. Either this happens, or a fight will ensue.

2. Only men suggest having aromatic acorns on the face. This facilitates the differentiation between males and females. Male glider bears are more willing to mark their territories than females.

3. A sugar bear that has been replaced by a more dominant member of the colony may become depressed and begin to show signs of depression.

The behavior of other sugar bears towards particular gliders in a group also has a direct influence on how a suggestion will behave in the long term. For example, if a sugar bear is regularly harassed by older and stronger gliders, the weaker sugar bear may become depressed or exhibit excessive aggression.

4. Fights that arise because a new suggestion has been introduced into an existing group should be avoided because adult sugar bears are known to fight “intruders” to the death. At the first sign of aggression, remove the newcomer and transfer the new sugar bear to a separate cage.

5. The dominant male should not be removed from a group as this will cause stress to the whole group. Stress can eventually lead to extreme symptoms like self-mutilation.

Some pet owners eliminate the dominant male to facilitate the entry of a new SG. This approach may or may not work, because the honey glider colony system is so important that other members of the group are physiologically weakened when a dominant member is forcibly removed from the group.

6. Rubbing a piece of cloth on the body of a newcomer would be a better approach when introducing new gliders to an existing group. Let the old gliders join in the scent before showing the existing group your new member. In this way, the entry of the new member will have a less negative impact on the existing group.

7. New gliders must be placed in a starter cage for at least 21 days before being introduced to the existing colony or group. This is done to reduce the chances of spreading an infection or disease.

8. If a new SG has been attacked or has not integrated by general sense of smell, the sugar glider should be removed and placed in a separate cage once more. Any attempt to reintegrate the new honey glider should be made after one to two weeks.

9. Honey bears are naturally active at night because this marsupial species is nocturnal. In the wild, honey bears also hunt at night.

10. Behavioral synchronization is sometimes observed in small groups of sugar bears. If one glider is alarmed, others may be alarmed as well.

11. When temperatures drop, a colony of honey bears will huddle closely together to raise or maintain body temperature.

12. The gestation period of the sugar bear is only fifteen to seventeen days.

13. A sugar glider can breed at any time of the year.

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