Kangaroo

Macropus rufus

Classifications

Domain Eukarya: These animals can be single or multicellular, and they have a nucleus. Also they have a membrane.


Kingdom Animalia: All of these members are multicellular,heterotrophs,and they all lack a cell wall.


Phylum Chordata: They are bony, have bilateral symmetry, and have a complete digestive system.


Subphylum Vertebrata: These animals all are muscular. They also have a backbone and a ventral heart.


Class Mammalia: All of these species are capable of the production of milk. Also they have 3 middle ear bones and they all have hair.


Order Diprotodontia: Most are herbivores and have an upper jaw with three incisors. Also, they have upper canines.


Family Macropodidae: They have long narrow hind feet and powerful hind limbs. Also they have a fourth toe of the hind foot which helps them because it is long and the strongest.


Genus Macropus: This only includes the kangaroo.


Species: Macropus rufus

General Description

Height: 1.8 meters when it is standing up


Length:Males range in total body length from 1,300 to 1,600 mm and females from 850 to 1,050 mm. Tail length is from 1,000 to 1,200 mm for males and 650 to 850 mm for females.


Weight:55 to 90 kg


Color: The red kangaroo's fur is usually reddish brown in males and bluish gray in females.


Natural Range: Kangaroos are found in Australia and Tasmania, as well as on surrounding islands.


Diet: The kangaroo has two different diets, a wild diet and a zoo diet. The wild diet is grasses, plants, and shrubs.The zoo diet is grains, lettuce, apples, carrots, sweet potatoes, bananas, and peanuts.


Habitat: Australia has rainfall averages less than 500 millimeters. Kangaroos usually are found in open plains habitats without many trees or bushes, but are not often found in regions without shade and shelter from scattered trees.


Predators: The kangaroo's preys are wild dogs, tigers, raptors, humans, and sheep.

Physical Adaptations

One physical adaptation is that when they move quickly, they use their tail for balance. This helps them get away fast from their predators. Another physical adaption is that they use their legs and clawed feet to defend themselves from attackers. Red kangaroos can bite, which helps them when they have to battle with an enemy like a dingo. Also, they use their forelegs with heavily clawed paws for eating, grooming, and fighting. The red kangaroo's range of vision is approximately 300°, due to the position of its eyes. This helps them see their prey very easily. Another physical adaption is that the females have the unusual ability to delay birth of their baby until their previous joey has left the pouch. This is called embryonic diapause.

Behavioral Adaptations

The first behavioral adaptations is that if pursued into the water, a kangaroo may use its forepaws to hold the predator underwater to drown it. Another behavioral adaption is that kangaroos feed mainly by night and rest during the heat of the day. This means that they will not get dehydrated during the day and this helps them with avoiding predators during the day. Also the kangaroo digs deep into the ground to get water. This helps them survive so again they don't get dehydrated. When a kangaroo hears an intruder or a loud noise, the kangaroo straightens up and leaps off its powerful back legs. This helps to either attack or run for it! Another behavioral adaption is that they carry around their joeys to keep them safe.

References

Basic facts about kangaroos. (n.d.). Retrieved 2015, from defenders or the wildlife website: http://www.defenders.org/kangaroo/basic-facts

Burton, M. (2002). Kangaroo. In International wildlife encyclopedia (3rd ed., Vol. 10, pp. 1333-1336). New York, NY: Marshall Cavendish.

Dewey, T., & Yue, M. (n.d.). red kangaroo. Retrieved May 11, 2001, from Animal Diversity Web website: http://animaldiversity.org/accounts/Macropus_rufus/

Lechner, D. M. E. (1995). Kangaroo. In Amazing animals around the world (Vol. 9, p. 12). Grolier Educational.

Red Kangaroo. (n.d.). Retrieved from Encyclopedia Of Life website: http://eol.org/data_objects/24735665

Red Kangaroo. (n.d.). Retrieved 2014, from The Animal Files website: http://www.theanimalfiles.com/mammals/marsupials/kangaroo_red.html

Schersche, J. J. (n.d.). Red kangaroo. Retrieved 2015, from National Geographic website: http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/mammals/red-kangaroo/?source=A-to-Z

Sharp, J. W. (n.d.). Red Kangaroo. Retrieved from Dersert USA website: http://www.desertusa.com/animals/red-kangaroo.html

Western Grey Kangaroo. (n.d.). Retrieved 2014, from Brook field Zoo website: http://www.czs.org/Brookfield-ZOO/Zoo-Animals/Australia-House/Western-Gray-Kangaroo