Red Kangaroo - Feeding, Conservation and Reproduction

Red Kangaroo: find out what this animal is like, its physical characteristics, character, behavior, etc. The Macropodidae family corresponds to a group of animals that are...

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The Macropodidae family corresponds to a group of animals that are mammals and are characterized by the presence of a marsupial sac where embryonic development is completed, making them unique in their mode of reproduction. Within this family we find different genera, some lesser known, since in general we talk more about kangaroos. This term has no taxonomic validity and although it can be used to include various species, in general it is used to identify larger marsupials.

As usual, at PlanèteAnimal we are pleased to present you useful information on wildlife and this time we want to do it by telling you about an incredible marsupial, the red kangaroo (Macropus rufus) .

We therefore invite you to continue reading to discover the characteristics, habitat, conservation status, customs, diet and reproduction of the red kangaroo.


  • Oceania
  • Australia

Red Kangaroo Characteristics

The red kangaroo has a double distinction, it is Australia's largest land mammal and also the largest marsupial. The males are larger than the females, with a height between 1.3 and 1.6 meters, while the females measure between 0.65 and 0.85 m. The tail lengths are also quite considerable, up to about 1.2 m for the male and 0.85 m for the female.

They weigh around 90 kg and sexual dimorphism is observed both in size and coloration, since females are usually gray, while males are reddish brown. The red kangaroo is a robust animal, with a strong tail and lower limbs that allow it to move by jumping, reaching up to 50 km/h. On the other hand, the tail uses it to maintain balance while jumping. Also, together with the legs, they are important limbs for supporting and resting.

Like all other marsupials, females have a frontal pouch known as the marsupium, which covers the udders and is vital for the development of the young.

Red Kangaroo Habitat

The red kangaroo is endemic to Australia, its range covers much of the arid and semi-arid territory of the central and interior region of this country. The red kangaroo's preferred habitat is scrub forests, savannas or grasslands, and desert areas.

They live in areas with rainfall averaging about 500mm, being the essential water for the reproductive biology of the species. This animal has benefited from certain cultivation areas, due to the presence of artificial water bodies.

Red Kangaroo Behavior

The red kangaroo is a social animal that lives in groups of a few or more individuals, which are always led by a dominant male. Sometimes, these gather in agglomerations counting up to 1500 kangaroos. The dry season is decisive for reproduction and influences the number of populations.

Although they move during the day, they usually rest during these hours, since their greatest activity is at dusk and at night. Although they tend to generally stay within their range, in adverse environmental conditions they may travel long distances in search of more favorable environments for groups.They also tend to groom themselves using their claws on their upper limbs.

Red Kangaroo Feeding

This marsupial is a herbivore that depends mainly on green vegetation for food. In this sense, the red kangaroo consumes leaves, grass, flowers and also usually ingests succulents. It can go for long periods without consuming water directly, because feeding on certain types of plants, such as the last mentioned, allows it to hydrate at the same time. They also include certain wood stems or bark in their diet.

Their feeding habits develop mainly in open areas where they spend a lot of time grazing.

Reproduction of the red kangaroo

Have you ever seen two boxer kangaroos? It happens because the males try to mate with as many females as possible, so they will often compete against existing rivals to achieve their goal, which they do by attacking the opponent with their upper limbs, this which gives us the feeling that they are boxing with each other.

Red kangaroos, like other species in this group, have a unique reproductive process in the animal world. After fertilization, a baby will be born at around 33 days, without having fully developed. Once expelled, the embryo will immediately instinctively climb over its mother and enter the marsupial sac, attaching itself to the udders. Just after a few days, the female can be fertilized again by a male, but due to the fact that she has a baby in the pouch, a biological process known as embryonic diapause is triggered, which will keep the fertilized egg dormant. and underdeveloped. After just over 200 days, when the young from the sac begin to emerge intermittently, then the last embryonic cell will begin to develop.

For the third time, the female can become pregnant again, so that at the same time, she is able to have a nascent blastocyst or embryo, another in full development in the pouch and a juvenile third, which ends up returning to the pocket.

Red kangaroos become independent during the year when they stop nursing. Females reach sexual maturity at 15 months, while males reach almost two years. However, under extreme environmental conditions, this process may be delayed and is also limited in adults.

Red kangaroo conservation status

The red kangaroo is considered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature to be of least concern with a stable population trend. Although at one time these kangaroos were hunted for the consumption of their meat and the commercialization of the skin, these activities are currently regulated. On the other hand, most of these animals are found in protected areas of Australia, which also offers them shelter.

Red Kangaroo Pictures

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