Macropus robustus

Wallaroos, and their relatives, are the largest animals that hop.

Wallaroos, kangaroos, and their relatives are the only large animals to use hopping as their primary form of locomotion. All other hopping animals weigh less than 11 pounds. Wallaroo males weigh approximately 120 pounds and females go up to 55 pounds! It actually requires little energy from the wallaroo to be able to hop at such fast speeds. Wallaroos also use their strong tail as a counterbalance and a counterweight.

Wallaroos rest when it’s too hot.

Wallaroos generally rest during the hottest part of the day in the shadows created by the overhangs and caves in their rocky habitat. They come out in the evening to graze on vegetation. They pant when overheated and need to cool, and will also lick their arms and chest if very hot. In the arid extremes of their habitat, especially during the hottest months of the year, wallaroos will actually lean towards nocturnality.

Wallaroo moms often have quite a few babies in tow.

Wallaroos are able to breed throughout the year. After mating, the fetus will develop for an average of 36 days before a tiny baby is born. The newborn, at less than an inch long, climbs up the mother’s body and into her pouch where it remains for six to seven months. The joey will spend most of its time in its mother’s pouch for the first nine months and rely on her for food for about 20 months. The mother and offspring usually retain a strong bond even when the young is independent. A female can have one young in the pouch, one older joey out of the pouch, and one dormant fertilized embryo held in reserve. This embryo will implant and begin development once the joey in the pouch is weaned.

Animal Facts

  • Lifespan Wallaroos typically live for 18 years in the wild, and 19 years under human care.
  • Habitat They live in the mountainous pastures of eastern Australia, from Victoria to Queensland.
  • Diet Wallaroos graze almost exclusively on grass and shrubs.
  • Size Males are 3.6 feet tall and females are 2.6 feet tall.
  • Location in Zoo Roo Walkabout
  • Conservation Status Least Concern

Did You Know?

Wallaroos can go to two to three months without drinking water, surviving on the water contained in the plants they eat.