Ambaa and Babu had a great time playing in the hall and landing tonight. This was the first evening when I let them out to play without cleaning their cage as well Ė that will happen on Wednesday night as usual.
Because I wasnít cleaning their cage they didnít have to stay in their carry case very long. They were quite slow to start exploring because they hadnít got bored with being in the carry case and because it was a bit earlier in the evening. After about 15 minutes staying in and around the carry case they started to explore and before long they were both charging about.
They got very excited and they starting fighting again. It is Babu who starts the fights. He begins by gently washing Ambaaís face but before long he gets very vigorous and grooms her very hard with his teeth around her mouth eyes and ears. He gets right inside her ears and eventually he get too rough and she lets out shrill little squeaks when he hurts her. She then turns away from him and he clings onto her with this front legs and continues to groom her behind the ears and over her back. It is almost as if he is trying to mount her. Babu then starts to nip Ambaa and she turns round to face him and before long they are up on their back legs, nose to nose, pushing each other with their front feet. The Ďfightí didnít last very long but I managed to get some pictures of it which I'll put in the album shortly. After a few minutes both rats were running about again as if nothing had happened.
Babuís nipping and biting reminds me a lot of ferretís mating behaviour but other Pouched Rat owners donít think this is any part of courtship behaviour. They could be right but it has only started since Ambaa and Babu matured.
They have both got the idea of getting into their carry box so they can be taken back to their house. As soon as Iíd get the carry box ready they both came up to it. Babu was the first in. Ambaa wasnít quite sure and didnít seem to know where the opening was but she found it eventually, with a small shove from me, and I was able to get them both home together.