Keepers at RZSS Edinburgh Zoo excitedly announced the arrival of Wallaby joeys! The bouncing babies have been spotted in their pouches in Edinburgh Zoo’s Wallaby Outback exhibit.
There are five joeys at present, each eagerly peeking out of mum’s pouch. There are also a couple already exploring the enclosure without mum.
Lorna Hughes, Primate Team Leader at RZSS Edinburgh Zoo, said, “It’s great to see the Wallaby mums with their new young and getting on so well. The babies will tend to stay close to mum for the first few months, but they can now be seen venturing out around the enclosure on their own…Wallabies are a marsupial mammal, which means they continue to breed throughout the year. We are looking forward to welcoming more this year, so keep your eyes peeled for them as you walkthrough Wallaby Outback!”
The Swamp Wallaby (Wallabia bicolor) is native to eastern Australia; from the most northern tip of Queensland, Cape York, through New South Wales and Victoria in the south. Despite their name, Swamp Wallabies live in forests, scrublands and woodlands with thick undergrowth.
Swamp Wallabies resemble kangaroos, but are smaller and have longer fur. The males are larger and heavier than females, while the tail on both sexes is the same length as the body. Although Wallaby tails are not prehensile, they are used for balance when moving and to prop themselves up in a sitting posture.
A Wallaby’s diet consists of mainly grasses and plants, and their elongated faces and molars are shaped specially to help them cut through the thick coarse vegetation.
Swamp Wallabies are currently classified as “Least Concern” on the IUCN Red List, with no major threats to the species.