Download PDF

Kangaroo Information

Bookmark added to your notes.
View Notes

The kangaroo is a marsupial from the Macropodidae tribe (macropods, meaning "large foot"- kangaroo scientific name). The answer to the question of what is a kangaroo is that it is the phrase used in common usage to identify the Red Kangaroo, as well as the Antilopine Kangaroo, Eastern and Western Grey Kangaroo, the largest species in this genus. Australia and New Guinea are indigenous to the Kangaroos. The Australian government reports that 34.3 million kangaroos in 2011 resided within Australia's commercial harvesting areas, up to 25.1 million a year earlier. Macropodidae is the kangaroo scientific name.

As with the words "wallaroo" and "wallaby" "kangaroo" applies to a class of species that is paraphyletic. All three belong to and are differentiated by size by individuals of the same taxonomic family, Macropodidae. The biggest species are called "kangaroos" in the family, and the youngest are commonly called "wallabies". The word "wallaroos" applies to an intermediate size species.

Some other type of macropod, that inhabits the far northeastern Queensland, tropical rainforests of New Guinea, and some of the islands in the area, are tree-kangaroos. A general definition of the relative size of these informal words may be as follows:

  • Wallabies: 45-105 cm head and body length and 33-75 cm tail length; the dwarf wallaby (the youngest of all recognized species of macropods) is 46 cm long and 1.6 kg in weight.

  • Tree-kangaroos: From the tree-kangaroo of Lumholtz: 48-65 cm body and head length, 60-74 cm tall, 7.2 kg (16 lb) weight for males and 5.9 kg (13 lb) weight for females; to the grizzled tree-kangaroo: 75-90 cm (30 to 35 in) length and 8-15 kg (18-33 lb) weight.

  • Wallaroos: With a tail length of 60-70 cm and a weight of 19-22 kg (41.8-48.5 lb) for males and 13 kg (28.6 lb) for females exists the black wallaroo (the shortest of the two species).

  • Kangaroos: A large male can be 2 m tall and weigh 90 kg.

Kangaroo Habitat:

Kangaroo habitat resides in a number of habitats in Tasmania, Australia, and nearby islands, such as trees, plains, woodlands, and savannas. Kangaroos inhabit separate niches in the ecosystem, based on the species.

Diet and Behavior:

  • Kangaroos are observed to be herbivores and different kinds of plants such as shrubs, grasses, and flowers are primarily part of their diet. Fungi and moss can also be consumed by certain animals. In groups called "mobs," which can also be called troops or herds, kangaroos live. The dominant male in the group typically heads these mobs.

  • Kangaroos can simply repeat their food in order to chew it as cud and then swallow it again, similar to cows. In kangaroos, this action is much harder to obtain than in ruminant beasts. 

  • The stomachs of kangaroo vary from those of cows and related animals; the fermentation mechanism in their respective stomachs is different, whereas both kangaroos and cows carry chambered stomachs.

  • With the exception of cows, kangaroos do not generate as much methane in the process, so kangaroos do not contribute as much to global methane emissions as cows.

  • Typically, kangaroos are found to be active at night and even in the early morning hours, however, their underlying trend of activity is different. Their periods of rest are confined almost entirely to a regular pattern (during the day).

  • They can go without drinking water for a long time, similar to camels, because of their relative inactivity in the day time when it is warmer. As their diet contains plants, the water content present in the plants that they consume will largely fulfil their water needs.


  • The only large animals to use jumping as a form of locomotion are kangaroos. For a red kangaroo, the comfortable hopping speed is around 20-25 km/h (12-16 mph), but it is possible to reach speeds of up to 70 km/h (43 mph) over short distances, although it can maintain a speed of 40 km/h (25 mph) for almost 2 km/h (1.2 mi).

  • The strong gastrocnemius muscles raise the body off of the ground throughout a hop, whereas the smaller plantaris muscle is being used for push-off, which connects near the broad fourth foot. In elastic tendons, seventy per cent of the potential energy is retained.

  • It uses pentapedal locomotion at sluggish velocities, by using its tail to shape a tripod from its two forelimbs whereas carrying forward its hind feet. Pentapedal walking and fast hopping are both costly in terms of resources. The most energy-efficient is jumping at moderate speeds, and a kangaroo travelling over 15 km/h retains more energy efficiency than comparably sized animals running at the very same pace.

Social and Sexual Behaviour

  • Kangaroo groups are known as courts, mobs, or troops, that typically include 10 or more kangaroos. Having lived in mobs will get some of the group's weaker members with defence. Mob size and stability differ across geographic regions, with greater and much more healthy aggregations in eastern Australia than in arid areas farther west.

  • Bigger aggregations, similar to those of ungulates, exhibit vast quantities of associations and complicated social structures. Nose touching and sniffing are one common activity, which happens often when a person joins a group. Much information from scent signals is obtained from the kangaroo doing the sniffing.

  • Without consequent violence, this conduct enforces social harmony. When one kangaroo is small, it will keep its body nearer to the ground throughout mutual sniffing as well as its head would quiver, that functions as a potential form of submission. Introductions between females and males are normal and here the most active in meeting females are the larger males.


  • Kangaroos tend to have some predators that are natural. Thylacine, which palaeontologists believe to have been a crucial natural kangaroo predator, is now extinct. Certain endangered predators featured Megalania, Wonambi, and the marsupial lion. 

  • However, at least 50,000 years ago, with the introduction of mankind in Australia and the appearance of the dingo about 5,000 years ago, kangaroos had to evolve.

  • Kangaroo carrion is commonly consumed by wedge-tailed eagles and other raptors. Also, Goannas as well as other carnivorous reptiles, when certain food sources are unavailable, often pose a risk to younger kangaroo species.

  • Introduced animals such as feral cats, foxes, and both domestic and feral dogs, along with dingos, represent a danger to populations of kangaroos. About Kangaroo and wallabies are excellent swimmers, and, if confronted with the option, frequently escape into waterways. 

  • A large kangaroo can use its forepaws to keep the predator underwater perhaps to drown it if pursued into the water.

  • A further defensive technique mentioned by witnesses is to trap the attacking dog with his forepaws as well as disembowel it with his hind legs.


  • A variety of adaptations to an infertile nation, dry, and highly variable environment have been established by kangaroos. The young are raised, like all marsupials, at quite an early stage of growth after a pregnancy of 31-36 days. Only the forelimbs were rather established at this point so that the newborn can climb to the pouch and adhere to a teat.

  • In contrast, a human embryo will be around seven weeks old at a comparable stage of development, and early newborns at less than 23 weeks are typically not stable enough to thrive. Whenever the joey is raised, it's all about a lima bean's size. Usually, the joey will remain in the pouch for around nine months before leaving the pouch for short periods of time. Usually, it is treated by its mother till it reaches 18 months.

  • On the day she gives birth, the female kangaroo is normally indefinitely pregnant. Furthermore, she has the capacity to stop an embryo's growth before the previous joey is ready to leave the pouch. This is referred to as embryonic diapause, which can occur in periods of drought and areas with low sources of food.

Reproduction and Life Cycle

  • The reproduction of the kangaroo information is close to that of opossums. The egg devolves from the ovary into the uterus (even now enclosed in the shell membrane, a few micrometres thick, and with just a small amount of yolk inside it). It is fertilized there and grows into a newborn rapidly. Also in the largest kangaroo population, after just 33 days, the newborn appears. Typically, only one young person at a time is born.

  • It is hairless, blind, and just a few centimetres elongated; its hindlegs are pure stumps; alternatively, it uses its more evolved forelegs to crawl into the pouch, which takes around three to five minutes, via the thick fur on the belly of its mother. It clasps across one of the four teats while in the pouch and begins to feed. Nearly immediately, the menstrual cycle of the mother begins again.

  • Into the uterus, another egg devolves and then becomes sexually responsive. Thus, if she undergoes mating and a second egg is fertilized, it temporarily stops its growth. This is referred to as embryonic diapause, which can occur in periods of drought and areas with low sources of food. In the meantime, the neonate develops quickly in the pouch.

  • The baby (joey) is sufficiently big and formed after around 190 days and makes its full appearance out from the pouch, thus poking its head out for several weeks before it finally feels secure enough to emerge entirely. It spends more time with the outside world from that day forward and finally leaves the pocket for the last time after around 235 days.

  • The average kangaroo lifespan ranges from six years in the wild to over 20 years in captivity, depending on the species. Nevertheless, many individuals do not attain adulthood in the wild in the kangaroo lifespan.

Kangaroos and Humans

Humans and kangaroos have such a large and complicated pattern of contact with each other. Kangaroos have long been used by humans for food, clothes, and certain forms of shelter. Kangaroos could be regarded as pests due to their growing numbers, especially by farmers while kangaroos battle for grazing land.

In grasslands and places that are traditional farmland, kangaroos are sometimes present, so commodity competition can take place. When feeding, kangaroos are not usually aggressive. The condition of farmers considering kangaroos as pests is close to how many deer could be seen as pests in the United States.

Kangaroo Facts

Below mentioned are some of the kangaroo facts and kangaroo information:-

  • Kangaroos are killed for their skin, fur, and meat. But if a kangaroo were to invade and become hostile, others would argue it was done to manage the population, protect farmers' crops, and homes.

  • They are prepared and able to face the world. They had to adjust to a range of problems in Australia with such a diverse environment to fend off predators, get across a vast area of the property in a short period of time, and forage for food where others would have given up centuries ago.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

Q1. What is the Kangaroo Baby Size?

Ans. Joeys are only one inch (kangaroo baby size) that is equivalent to 2.5 centimetres, large at birth, or around the size of a grape. Joey's fly, unassisted, to the warmth and protection of the pouch through their mom's thick fur after birth. A recently born joey can't nibble or swallow, and therefore kangaroo mom utilizes her muscles to push milk down her throat.

Q2. Give the Kangaroo Population in Australia.

Ans. Kangaroo population Australia is approximately 50 million. The land of the kangaroo is Australia, habitat to 25 million people and an approximate 50 million kangaroos, dubbed "plague proportions" by some Aussies.

Q3. Where Do Kangaroos Live?

Ans. On the Australian continent, most kangaroos live, but each species has a special location that it chooses to call home. For instance, on the ground of the rainforests in northeastern Queensland, the musky rat-kangaroo prefers to live in small nests. When studying kangaroo, it was known that Red Kangaroos are present, favouring open flat plains across much of arid Australia. From Cape York to Tasmania, Eastern Greys are discovered; Western Greys tend to have a fairly wide distribution, from Western Australia to Victoria (since these two species prefer the denser kind of vegetation).