Keep an eye out for… tree-kangaroos

Although most visitors to our region think you are pulling their leg when you mention the words tree-kangaroo, they are in fact a very real, and very rare rainforest animal.

On tour we are sometimes luck enough to come across the Lumholtz’s tree-kangaroo, this is the smaller of the two tree kangaroo species found in Australia and found predominantly in the Atherton Tablelands region.

As their name suggests they are part of the kangaroo family, which are marsupials. They are relatively small (dog-sized) standing around 45 – 60 cm tall with the males weighing in at around 7 kilograms and the females around 6 kilograms. Tree-kangaroos’ natural diet is based on leaves, flowers, shoots, bark, eggs and even the occasional small bird.

These amazing animals are arboreal, meaning they spend a majority of their life in the treetops. They move effortlessly between trees thanks to their long tail, which provides balance and strength. On the flip side tree kangaroos are quite clumsy when on solid ground, so understandably do not spend to much time there.

Socially the Lumholtz’s tree-kangaroos are quite solitary animals, except when mating and in the long mother – joey ( baby kangaroo ) relationship. Each kangaroo maintains a home area and will be hostile towards a member of the same sex to protect their area. So like most animals the male will protect his area and visit the areas of the females in his group for mating.

Sadly the number of Lumholtz’s tree-kangaroos are declining due to urban growth and a decline in natural habitat. So when you are visiting our beautiful region be sure to jump on board our day tour and cross your fingers that we bump in to one of these guys throughout the day.

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