Kangaroos
Macropus rufus

You can see red kangaroos at the Zoo’s summer Kangaroo Crossing exhibit opening May 27, 2017!   Explore all things Australia with an Australia-themed birthday party, go Backstage with Kangaroos, or register for a once-in-a-lifetime Australia After Dark family sleepover at the Zoo!

Where They Live: 
Red kangaroos are native to Australia and are found on open grassy plains in the interior parts of the country (away from the coasts).

What They Eat:
Kangaroos graze on grasses, herbs, and shrubs and have a chambered stomach similar to goats and sheep.

Test Your Knowledge! (answers below)

  1. Kangaroos and closely-related wallabies are called macropods. The word macropod means…
    a. many feet b. large feet  c. large pouch    d. strong tail
  1. Baby kangaroos are called…
    a. joeys       b. kids        c. cubs        d. pups

Answer each of the following questions with True or False:

  1. Some kangaroos live in trees.
  2. Kangaroos are unique mammals because they lay eggs.
  3. Kangaroos have an excellent sense of smell and can smell water that is miles away.

Fun Facts!

A group of kangaroos is called a mob.  They are very social animals.  Mobs are made up of several females with their joeys and led by an older male.  The mobs travel to find food.

Male kangaroos ‘box’ each other to assert dominance.  During a kangaroo ‘boxing match,’ the kangaroos stand on their hind legs and try to hit or jab their opponent’s forearms.  They can also balance their whole body on their tails and give one powerful kick with both legs working as one.

Kangaroos vs. Wallabies: Who Would Win?

Download this activity sheet to learn the differences between a Red kangaroo and a Bennett’s wallaby – also featured in this summer’s Kangaroo Crossing Exhibit at the Minnesota Zoo.

Answers