and body length is 350-450 mm, tail 210-300. Coloration varies
from mostly gray, olive brown or dark rufous brown on top,
with a less common black phase. This occurs in both sexes,
and in litters with more commonly colored individuals. All
color phases have prominent white spots on the back and sides.
The coat is generally short, thick and soft. Dasyurus
viverrinus is unique in the genus in that the first toe
on the hind foot is lacking. The foot pads are granulate.
The pouch is shallow, formed by a patch of skin which covers
the six to eight mammae. Dasyurus viverrinus prefers
dry forest and open country and is primarily terrestrial,
though it is a good climber. They are also mostly nocturnal,
though they have been seen by day.
main commponent of its diet is invertebrates, especially agricultural
pests such as the cockchafer beetle and corbie grub. Carrion
and some fruits are also eaten.
Females are polyestrous, reaching a peak in late May and early
June, with gestation lasting between 20 and 24 days. The young
detach from the nipples at 8 weeks and are independent by
eighteen weeks. The maximum known life span of Dasyurus
viverrinus is 6 years 10 months.
Dasyurus viverrinus was common in South Australia,
New South Wales and Victoria, but today
it probably survives only in Tasmania.