Great gray kangaroo


Great gray kangaroo (Macropus giganteus)

Fascinating reproduction

Although it is the largest mammal in Australia the great gray kangaroo cub is no larger than a gummy bear at birth. It measures just 2.5 cm and weighs less than 1 gram! Although completely underdeveloped it finds its way from the birth opening into the mother's pouch and clings to a teat with its mouth which it won't let go of for the next two to three months. Immediately after the birth of a young animal the female mates again. However, this embryo only develops and is born when the older cub has finally left the pouch. The evolutionary advantage is likely to be found in the sometimes inhospitable habitats of these animals: if the cub dies or the mother has to leave a successor is immediately available.


Category: Mammal

Weight: ♂ 55kg; ♀ 25kg

Sexually mature: 20 month

gestation period: 36 days

food: grasses and leaves

Way of life: open forests and grasslands, but also forested mountain regions

Danger: not endangered

Breeding program: EEP (European Conservation Breeding Program) in which the Görlitz Nature Conservation Zoo participates

distribution: Eastern and Southern Australia, including Tasmania

distribution area