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Ant lucp.jpg
White-footed dunnart
(Sminthopsis leucopus)
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Infraclass: Marsupialia
Order: Dasyuromorphia
Family: Dasyuridae
Subfamily: Sminthopsinae
Tribe: Sminthopsini
Genus: Sminthopsis
Thomas, 1887
Type species
Phascogale crassicaudata
Gould, 1844

23, see text

Dunnart is a common name for species of the genus Sminthopsis, narrow-footed marsupials the size of a European mouse. They have a largely insectivorous diet.


Fat-tailed dunnart in its natural habitat.

The genus name Sminthopsis was published by Oldfield Thomas in 1887, the author noting that the name Podabrus that had previously been used to describe the species was preoccupied as a genus of beetles.[1] The type species is Phascogale crassicaudata, published by John Gould in 1844.

There are 19 species,[note 1] all of which occur in Australia and New Guinea:[2]

The genus is referred to by their common name of dunnarts.


A male dunnart's Y chromosome is the smallest known mammalian Y chromosome.[3]


  1. ^ The list is based on the Third edition of Wilson & Reeder's Mammal Species of the World (2005) except where both the Mammal Diversity Database and IUCN agree on the change.


  1. ^ Divljan, Anja; Ingleby, Sandy; Parnaby, Harry (6 January 2015). "Taxonomic status of Podabrus albocaudatus Krefft, 1872 and declaration of Sminthopsis granulipes Troughton, 1932 (Marsupialia: Dasyuridae) as a protected name for the White-tailed Dunnart from Western Australia". Zootaxa. 3904 (2): 283–292. doi:10.11646/zootaxa.3904.2.7. ISSN 1175-5334. PMID 25660785. S2CID 30027103.
  2. ^ "Sminthopsis longicaudata". WA Museum Collections. 2017-02-14. Retrieved 2020-12-24.
  3. ^ Toder R.; Wakefield M.J.; Graves J.A.M. (2000). "The minimal mammalian Y chromosome - the marsupial Y as a model system". Cytogenet Cell Genet. 91 (1–4): 285–92. doi:10.1159/000056858. PMID 11173870. S2CID 30401023.

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