"The most iconic Animal of Australia"
Australian Kangaroos are wonderful animals. The Kangaroo is the iconic animal of Australia. It even appears on the coat of arms for Australia. It was chosen along with the Emu to show progress. As these animals never go backwards only forwards.
For some quick facts then have a look at the Kangaroo Facts page. But keep reading for a more detailed explanation of these fascinating animals.
Over 60 Different Species
Australian kangaroos are endemic or unique to Australia and there are over 60 different species of kangaroos and close relatives.
They belong to the “macropod” family, which means “great footed.” You will however see the odd kangaroo in zoos around the world and there are even some that are native to New Guinea.
The main species of macropods includeEastern Grey KangarooWestern Grey KangarooRed KangarooWallabyWallarooForest WallabiesPademelonsTree Kangaroo – in fear of becoming extinct
The first three species of Australian Kangaroos are the ones you are most likely to see on your travels around Australia. Not surprisingly, you’ll find Eastern Grey Kangaroos on the East Coast of Australia and the Western Grey Kangaroos on the West Coast of Australia.
The Red Kangaroo is the most common and you will find these across Australia but mainly inland away from the coastal areas. For a long time it wasn’t known that there were two different types of Grey Kanagaroos. They do look very similar but they do differ slightly in colour.
Be Careful When Driving
Australian Kangaroos vary greatly in size and their size depends predominantly on their species. Wallabies for example are much smaller than kangaroos. You can expect to see a range from 0.5kg to 90kg (?!!) and a Red Kangaroo can grow to as high as 2m!
They all have one thing in common, powerful back legs with long feet. Their hopping is what makes these animals so unusual and why we all love them so much.
They tend to be nocturnal with some species being active in the mornings and late afternoon. This is why its crucial that you pay special attention if you are out in your car around these times, particularly at dusk or late at night. They are like rabbits – they are attracted to the headlights.
They can do some serious damage to your car if you were to hit one. Most hire car companies will tell you not to drive after dusk if you are in an area renowned to have lots of Roos. You will see the locals have bars on the front of their cars in these areas to limit the damage.
Baby Kangaroos (Joeys)
Seeing a Mother (called a flyer) and its baby (called a joey) is a very special moment. The mother usually has one baby per year. It is born when it is just 2cm and weighs hardly anything. Then it crawls up its mum’s body and suckles on one of her 4 teats. The joey will then stay inside the pouch spending more and more time outside.
At about 10 months it is ready to leave the pouch for good. At that point, a second embryo starts to develop and the process starts all over again.
There is no set breeding season for kangaroos and the population of Australian kangaroos seems to keep on growing as a result.
Do you just love these cute animals, then why not treat youself to a souvenir. Check out these furry friends:
Buy a Book And Help Children In the Philippines
The Adventures of Bundy the Bush Kangaroo written by author Kenneth Hughes is fast becoming a sought after children's novel with an educational message. This excellent children's book has recently been praised and acknowledged for its literacy achievement by education departments in America , Wales , Canada , New Zealand , Australia and the Philippines as a tool for teachers and parents to address bullying in the school yard or on the internet.
The novel features cute and cuddly Australian animals to teach appropriate behaviour to children. The main characters are a gray western bush kangaroo by the name of Prince Bundy and his best friend Whitey, an Australian cockatoo, who together journey to the unknown east side of their home valley. On their adventure they meet some friendly animals who furnish them with good advice. This book is filled with laughter and is a must read for all who have the spirit of adventure within them.
You can feel good about your purchase as the money from every book sale goes to help children that are poor in the Philippines. They plan to build a farm to house street children as well as a school for them to be educated, so they don’t have to live life as a beggar on the streets of Manila.
For more information go to
Kangaroo Meat and Leather
Whilst you are here you should try some Australian Kangaroo meat. It is very good for you as it contains hardly any fat. It’s something to do with all that jumping they do which results in very lean muscle.
You can also buy kangaroo leather goods. This leather is light weight but very strong so it is often used in footwear but you will also see it used in small leather goods like wallets and purses.
Where to See Kangaroos in Australia
Firstly, we don’t all have Australian kangaroos running around our back yards but providing you get out of the city, you should be able to see a kangaroo as part of your visit to Australia.
Australian Kangaroos are herbivores which means they only eat plants and some eat mushrooms or funghi. You generally want to head for an area that has grass and trees as this is the kangaroos preferred terrain. That said, some live in trees and others prefer the beach.
Look out for the road signs warning you of kangaroos as these are good places to spot
usually more so at night though.
I tend to ask the locals when I get to a place as they have the best knowledge of where to find them. For example, we saw some great ones in South West Rocks down in a small clearing that the locals told us about. We also stopped off in Glenbrook on the way to the Blue Mountains and spent half an hour watching the kangaroos hop about in the camping area of the National Park there.
Kangaroo Island. is appropriately named and you are guaranteed to see some hopping about there. Stay in the Wilderness Lodge there and you can watch them from your balcony.
All the wildlife parks have kangaroos. This is a great place to get up close and personal with a Kangaroo too as they often allow you to feed them. Don’t attempt this in the wild though.
Australia walkabout wildlife Park, Calga.1 hour from Sydney towards Newcastle
Featherdale Wildlife Park. A great stop off on the way to the Blue Mountains nr Sydney
Sydney Taronga Zoo offers great harbour views
Cairns Zoo. They have a night zoo experience which is a great way to see Kangaroos.
Australia Zoo – Steve Irwin’s zoo just 1 hour from Brisbane
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