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Wallaroo Station Animal Fact Sheet
YELLOW-FOOTED ROCK WALLABY
Petrogale xanthopus 

Range:
South Australia, Western New South Wales, Southwestern Queensland.
A wallaby is a smaller marsupial in the kangaroo family, with the females having a pouch in which they carry their young. They are also macropods, which means "big foot." Their powerful tails help them zig-zag when running and provide comfortable support when sitting. When a wallaby moves, it swings the hind feet forward in a rocking motion and places them in front of the forelimbs. When going faster, it swings forward on its hind feet, stretching a tendon. On the next forward leap, the tendon contracts like a rubber band snapping back, pushing it forward. It can leap about five feet in a single bound.

The yellow-footed rock wallaby is grey above and white underneath. Has reddish patches on legs and white side stripe. The tail is barred - no other wallaby has this kind of markings on the tail.

When jumping from rock to rock they hold out their front limbs at right angles to their body to balance themselves once they have landed.


Habitat: Mountain tops and rocky areas.
Diet: Herbivorous: grass, leaves, herbs, hay, bark, twigs, fruits, vegetables
Status: Near threatened (IUCN).
Approximate Dimensions of Adult: Length: 20-30 in.
Weight: 6-20 lbs.
Lifespan: 12-18 years.
Reproduction & Offspring: Gestation is about 30 days with mainland animals giving birth in all months. The new joey is only ½ to ¾ of an inch long, grabs on to its mother's fur and pulls its way into the pouch. As it grows, it enters the pouch by diving in headfirst and stays with its legs and tail hanging out, or may somersault itself around. At about 8 months, it is too big to stay in the pouch but remains with its mother and is called a "joey at heel."

 

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