Christmas Bells

Christmas Bells
Christmas Bells - Blandfordia nobilis

Friday, May 19, 2006

The Nature of Kangaroos

Here are a few quiet "family" shots of some Eastern Grey Kangaroos (Macropus giganteus). I am posting these today because Zoe took the photos on the weekend, and because Anni wrote about a large "mob" of Kangaroos in her blog yesterday.

Anni wondered what they do all day. In a word, they rest. Most of the "mob" will be females, and all the mature ones will all be pregnant, or carrying a "Joey", or have a "Joey" at foot, as in the second photo. Some may be in all three stages of motherhood at once.

The other thing about such a "mob" of Kangaroos is that they feed in the early evening and early morning, when the grass is most likely to have some dew on it, allowing them to drink and feed at the same time. During the day, the "mob" usually rest under a stand of trees, where they can get some shelter from the sun.

Zoe was quite pleased to get a photo of the male taking his weight on his tail, just about to propel himself across the ground at ultra-slow speed, using the tail as a "prop" while sliding his huge back feet forward.

She was even more pleased to get a photo of a grown Joey having a bit off a feed from Mum, even though she is nearly as large as Mum is.

CSIRO biologists have studied the amazing fertility of Kangaroos, and one fact they have discovered is that the female (a "doe") can simultaneously produce milk at different stages (from different teats) to suit the developmental needs of an "independent" Joey, like this one, and a smaller one which is almost certainly a permament resident of the pouch.


Anni said...

Thanks for the illustration, Zoe & Denis! My camera is still being repaired...

Denis Wilson said...

I thought there must have been a problem. I recall now you posted reports of technical failure of the new Nikon. Ssshh!!! I don't want mine to get the word.

Miss Eagle said...

Denis, Bigpond is not accepting email for you. It says you are over quota - so clearly you have a lot of email to read.

Blessings, bliss, & Berger