Species: Tree Kangaroo
(Also Known as the Matchie’s Tree Kangaroo)
Tree Kangaroos live in mountainous cloud forests at elevations up to 11,000 feet in Papua New Guinea, Indonesia, and North Australia. They have adapted to live in trees with their shorter arms and stronger forelimbs for climbing, giving them somewhat of an appearance from a cross between a kangaroo and a lemur. Their diet consists mainly of tree leaves but sometimes consume flowers, roots, moss, and bark. Matchie’s Tree Kangaroos can leap 60 feet to the ground without getting hurt!! Joeys (what baby kangaroos are known as) stay with their mothers until they are about 18 months old. Tree Kangaroos are Australia’s largest tree-dwelling mammals, and can weigh up to 22 pounds. Indigenous peoples throughout the tree kangaroo’s range hunt the animals and this is a main cause that has almost lead the animal to extinction. The World Wildlife Fund collaborates with the program TRAFFIC, the wildlife trade monitoring network, to reduce illegal hunting and raise awareness for the tree kangaroos. Not much is known about the social behavior of wild tree kangaroos, but in captivity if females are isolated from other species after becoming pregnant the offspring almost always survive. This proves that the tree kangaroo is probably a very solitary animal.