Red Kangaroo


Red Kangaroo

Taxobox
name = Red KangarooMSW3 Groves|pages=66]
status = LC
status_system = iucn3.1
status_ref = IUCN2006 | assessors = Australasian Marsupial & Monotreme Specialist Group | year = 1996 | id = 40567 | title = Macropus rufus |downloaded = 2006-05-12]



regnum = Animalia
phylum = Chordata
classis = Mammalia
infraclassis = Marsupialia
ordo = Diprotodontia
familia = Macropodidae
genus = "Macropus"
species = "M. rufus"
binomial = "Macropus rufus"
binomial_authority = Desmarest, 1822

The Red Kangaroo ("Macropus rufus") is the largest of all kangaroos, the largest mammal native to Australia, and the largest surviving marsupial. It is found across mainland Australia, avoiding only the more fertile areas in the south, the east coast, and the northern rainforests.

Description

This species is a very large kangaroo with short, red-brown fur, fading to pale buff below and on the limbs. It has long, pointed earlobes and a squared-off muzzle. Females are smaller than males and are blue-grey with a brown tinge, pale grey below, although arid zone females are coloured more like males. It has two forelimbs with small claws, two muscular hindlimbs, which are used for jumping, and a strong tail which is often used to create a tripod when standing upright.

The Red Kangaroo's legs work much like a rubber band. The males can leap over nine meters in one leap.Fact|date=April 2008

Males grow up to a body length of Unit metre |1.4|1 long and weigh up to 85 kg (187.4 lb). Females reach a body length of up to Unit metre |1.1|1 long and weigh up to 35 kg (77.2 lb). Tails can be from Unit metre |0.9|1 up to Unit metre |1|1 long. The average Red Kangaroo stands approximately Unit metre |1.5|1 tall. [Menkhorst, P & Knight, F 2001, "A Field Guide to the Mammals of Australia," Oxford University Press, Melbourne.] Accounts of sizes greater than this are not uncommon, with some large males reportedly reaching approximately Unit metre |2|1.

The Red Kangaroo maintains its internal temperature at a point of homeostasis (about 36°C) using a variety of physical, physiological and behavioural adaptations. These include having an insulating layer of fur, being less active and staying in the shade when temperatures are high, panting, sweating, and licking its forelimbs.

The Red Kangaroo inhabits most of the dry inland of the central part of Australia in small groups called "mobs". It prefers open plains where trees and bushes are scarce.

The Red Kangaroo's range of vision is approximately 300 degrees due to the position of its eyes. A human's range of vision is around 180 degrees in comparison.

=Behaviour=The Red Kangaroo is mainly active in the cool of the evening or night, and lives alone or in small groups called 'mobs' (although food shortages can cause them to congregate into larger groups). Membership of these groups is very flexible, and males (boomers) are not territorial, fighting only after females (flyers) which come into heat. The largest males are dominant, and control most of the matings.Fact|date=October 2007

The Red Kangaroo is nocturnal and crepuscular, and largely spends the daylight hours sleeping or otherwise relaxing.

Feeding

The Red Kangaroo prefers to eat grasses and other vegetation. It can go long periods of time without water, as long as it has access to green plants as they have the ability to take moisture out of plants.

The dental formula of a kangaroo is the same dental formula as for macropods:

3.0-1.2.4 1.0.2.4

Breeding

The Red Kangaroo breeds all year round. The females have the unique ability to delay birth of their baby until their previous Joey has left the pouch. This is called embryonic diapause. The gestation period is around 33 days. The young Joey will permanently leave the pouch at around 235 days old, but will continue to suckle until it reaches 12 months of age.

Fighting

When male kangaroos fight, they may appear to be 'boxing'. They usually stand up on their hind limbs and attempt to push their opponent off balance by jabbing him or locking forearms. If the fight escalates, they will begin to kick each other. Using their tail to support their weight, they deliver kicks with their powerful hind legs.

=References=


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Look at other dictionaries:

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  • red kangaroo — /rɛd kæŋgəˈru/ (say red kangguh rooh) noun a large, slender bodied kangaroo, Macropus rufus, widely distributed throughout the plains and grasslands of inland Australia, the male of which may be up to 1.8 metres in height and measure 2.5 metres… …   Australian English dictionary

  • red kangaroo — noun Date: 1820 a large kangaroo (Macropus rufus) of the dry plains of inland Australia with the male having a reddish brown coat …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • red kangaroo — noun a large kangaroo, Megaleia rufa, found in the desert areas of Australia …   Wiktionary

  • red kangaroo — noun : a large kangaroo (Macropus rufus) of the plains and tablelands of So. Australia compare blue doe …   Useful english dictionary

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  • great red kangaroo — raudonoji kengūra statusas T sritis zoologija | vardynas taksono rangas rūšis atitikmenys: lot. Macropus rufus angl. great red kangaroo; plains kangaroo; red kangaroo vok. rotes Riesenkänguruh; Rot Großkänguruh rus. большой рыжий кенгуру; рыжий… …   Žinduolių pavadinimų žodynas

  • Kangaroo emblems and popular culture — deals with the uses which have been made of the image of the kangaroo such as coins, emblems, logos, mascots and in the naming of sports teams.Kangaroo emblem and logo The Kangaroo and Emu are standard bearers on the Australian Coat of… …   Wikipedia

  • kangaroo — kangaroolike, adj. /kang geuh rooh /, n., pl. kangaroos, (esp. collectively) kangaroo. any herbivorous marsupial of the family Macropodidae, of Australia and adjacent islands, having a small head, short forelimbs, powerful hind legs used for… …   Universalium

  • Kangaroo — Taxobox name = KangaroosMSW3 Groves | pages= 64 66] image width = 250px image caption = Female Eastern Grey Kangaroo with joey regnum = Animalia phylum = Chordata classis = Mammalia subclassis = Marsupialia ordo = Diprotodontia subordo =… …   Wikipedia


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