The Biggest Marsupial

Rhett A. Butler / mongabay.com

The Biggest Marsupial: Red Kangaroo (Macropus rufus)

Famous for their trademark pouches, the red kangaroo is the biggest mammal in all of Australia. It lives in central Australia, far inland and away from the coast. These kangaroos can weigh up to 88 pounds, and jump up to 9 feet in a single bound. Their distinctive thick tail is to balance to counteract the weight at the front of their bodies, forming a sort of a tripod so that the huge marsupial can stand. Red kangaroos live in groups of 2-4 animals, normally all mothers or children. To combat the intense mid-day sun in the Australian outback, Red Kangaroos interestingly lick their forearms to trigger evaporation, which in turn cools their bodies down. They are marked as Least Concerned on the IUCN endangered species list.

Mammal / Marsupial


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