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what are the four species of kangaroo?

what are the four species of kangaroo?

what are the four species of kangaroo?

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what are the four species of kangaroo?
what are the four species of kangaroo?

The kangaroo is a marsupial mammal that lives in Australia. Its strong hind legs distinguish the kangaroo for jumping, and it has large feet, a strong tail used for balance when jumping and long pointed ears.


This animal is part of the Macropodidae family that includes koalas and possums. Female kangaroos have pouches that contain mammary glands to nurse their young until they are ready to emerge.


Kangaroos are categorized as Least Concern in conservation status by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. There are four species of kangaroos.



These types are:



Antilopine Kangaroo (Macropus antilophius)


Western Gray Kangaroo (Macropus fuliginosus)

Eastern Gray Kangaroo (Macropus giganteus)

Red Kangaroo (Macropus rufus)


what are the four species of kangaroo?
what are the four species of kangaroo?

1. Antilopine Kangaroo (Macropus antilophius)


The name “Antilopine” is derived from the fur of this species, which is comparable to that of antelopes in both color and texture. The Antilopine kangaroos (M. antilopinus), are also at times referred to as the Antilopine wallaroos and the Antilopine wallaby.


They populate the plains and paddocks of the tropical north, all the way from the Cape York Peninsula in the east, extending to the Kimberley in the west.


These kangaroos are smaller than the red kangaroos and resemble wallaroos in general appearance, although these have a more slender built. The kangaroos of this species are closely related to red kangaroos and these too display sexual dimorphism.


Adult Antilopine males can grow up to 1.8 meters (5.9 feet) in length and can weigh as much as 70 kg (154 pounds), whereas female Antilopine are smaller, mostly weighing less than 30 kg (66 pounds).


The noses of male Antilopine kangaroos swell up behind their nostrils, helping them discharge more heat in hot and humid climates, allowing them to cool off.

The male Antilopine are covered with a thick, reddish-tan coat with pale chest fronts. On the other hand, the females’ coats range from gray to a light tan in color tones.

The Antilopine have slender faces and doe-like eyes and have an average lifespan of 16 years.  These kangaroos are exceptionally quick hoppers.

These Antilopine kangaroos mainly feed on grass and always search for short grass areas and grass patches. Native Australians like to refer to these kangaroos as gregarious grazers due to their habit of excessively grazing as a mob.


2. Western Gray Kangaroo (Macropus fuliginosus)


The western gray kangaroos (M. fuliginosus) are large and very common along the southern coast of the southwestern and Western Australia as well as in parts of southern Australia. The western grays are usually found in large mobs and can be anywhere in color from gray to brown.

Western grays are shorter than eastern grays, with an average length of 1.6 meters (5.25 feet). The adult western gray males can weigh up to 54 kg (about 120 pounds). These kangaroos are also called black-faced kangaroos, malle kangaroos and sooty kangaroos.

Mature western gray males give off a distinctive curry-like odor which has earned them the nickname “stinker”. This species of kangaroos has two further subspecies; Macropus fuliginosus melanops and the Macropus fuliginosus fuliginosus, generally referred to as the Kangaroo-Island Kangaroos.


The female western grays have an average weight of 62-100 pounds and a length ranging between 2ft 9 inches and 3ft and 7 inches. Their tails are between 2ft 7 inches and 3ft 3 inches in length. These female kangaroos are around 3ft 3 inches tall.

This species of kangaroo displays sexual dimorphism, with the male kangaroos being twice the size of a female. The western grays have a thick, coarse coat ranging in color from gray to brown. The chest, throat, and belly have a paler color shade compared to the color of rest of the body.


Distinguishing this kangaroo species from the eastern gray kangaroo is considered quite hard, although the western gray kangaroos have darker coloration around the head. These kangaroos feed on grass, leafy shrubs, and low trees, and consume food primarily at night.


what are the four species of kangaroo?
what are the four species of kangaroo?

3. Eastern Gray Kangaroo (Macropus giganteus)

The eastern gray kangaroos (Macropus giganteus) are also referred to as the great gray kangaroos or the Forester kangaroos. These kangaroos are mostly spotted in the open forests and grasslands of eastern Australia and Tasmania.

They prefer lightly forested territories for refuge and the open plains and pastures for grazing. The eastern grays inhabit the wetter parts of Australia and prefer open busy grasslands for shade during the day.

Eastern grays are bulkier and more brownish than all the other kangaroos. In fact, these kangaroos are known to be the heaviest species among all the kangaroos. The eastern grays are second to the red kangaroos on the list of the largest and heaviest living marsupials.


Eastern grays grow up to the height of 2.1 meters (6.9 feet) all the way from the head to the tail. The adult males weigh as much as 90 kg (about 200 pounds). In contrast, the females weigh about 37-88 pounds with an average total length of 6 feet.

These kangaroos are known for jumping up to 30 feet at a time. Large males of the species are more muscular and heavily built than the red kangaroo. The eastern gray kangaroos can travel at speeds of around 30 miles and upwards in an hour.


The maximum recorded speed of any kangaroo is approximately 40 miles per hour and this record was set by a large female eastern gray kangaroo. The kangaroos of this species have soft gray coats that are easily identifiable and their eyes appear to be large and wide.

The eastern gray kangaroos are known to have small heads and large upright ears. Both the western and eastern grays are uniformly colored, and their noses are hairy.


The eastern grays carry a genetic marker for blindness in one or, at times, both eyes, making them weak-sighted. They inhabit the wetter parts of Australia and prefer open busy grassland for shade during the day.


4. Red Kangaroo (Macropus rufus)


The red kangaroos (Macropus rufus) are regarded as the largest existing marsupial in the world. They also top the list of the largest and most powerful macropods. They are the most easily identifiable type among all the kangaroos’ species.


Red kangaroos are found throughout mainland Australia’s interior grasslands and mostly inhabit the arid and semi-arid center of the country. These kangaroos demonstrate sexual dimorphic. The adult male kangaroos are covered with a thick coat of fur, usually of reddish-brown or at times of pale yellowish brown color.

The females, on the other hand, have a bluish-gray fur coat that turns to a pale gray on the lower body. Female red kangaroos are relatively much smaller than the male kangaroos and weigh between 40-88 pounds.


They can reach the total height of up to 4.9-5.6 feet from head to tail. The males, on the other hand, are of 5.5-6.4 feet’s length and weigh around 200 pounds.

The red kangaroos are easily identified because of their long arms, distinctive convex face, whitish underparts, prominent black and white whisker marks on the muzzle, and bald patches on the nose (rhinarium).


Red kangaroos are highly evolved species. The position of their eyes enables these animals to have a complete 300-degree vision. These kangaroos populate grasslands, scrublands, and deserted territories of western and central Australia because of their diet.

Studies suggest that 75-95% of the red kangaroos consume a diet that consists of shrubs and green grasses. These animals are also capable of going without water for long periods of time because they can conserve enough water to survive arid and parched environments, as long as they have access to green shrubs and plants since they can extract moisture out of plants.


Red kangaroos are nocturnal and crepuscular creatures and emerge only at night, the crack of dawn and fall of dusk. They prefer to rest during the daytime under shades and hardly move around in daylight.

Red Kangaroos are known to trek for 16-19 miles in search of good feeding grounds in case forage in their area is poor. Grazing takes up most of these kangaroos’ daily activities.

There are a number of subspecies of these 4 main types of kangaroos that roam the pastures of Australia.


However, the 4 species discussed above make up for the main population. So the next time you find yourself on a safari in Australia or in the presence of kangaroos in a zoo somewhere, we expect you to be able to easily point out which one it is exactly.

what are the four species of kangaroo?
what are the four species of kangaroo?



Kangaroos belong to the animal family Macropodidae, which literally means ‘big foot.’ Thanks to their large feet and powerful hind legs, kangaroos can travel more than 56km/h and leap more than 9m in a single bound – that’s more than six ten-year-olds lying head to toe! They have small front legs and a long, strong tail which helps them balance while jumping. The tallest of all our planet’s marsupials, these amazing animals can stand over two meters tall.


Kangaroos are found in Eastern Australia, where they live in small groups called troops or herds (or ‘mobs’ by Australians), typically made up of 50 or more animals. If threatened, kangaroos pound the ground with their strong feet to alert and warn the others in the group. And these cool creatures aren’t to be messed with – when they fight, they punch and kick with powerful blows, and will sometimes even bite. Males will often fight each other over access to females.




The larger species of kangaroos have complex, high-crowned teeth. The four permanent molars on each side of both jaws erupt in sequence from front to back and move forward in the jaw, eventually being pushed out at the front. Thus, an old kangaroo may have only the last two molars in place, the first two (and the premolar) having long since been shed. The molars possess cross-cutting ridges, so that tough grass is sheared between opposing teeth. The molars of smaller macropodids are much simpler. The large kangaroos continue growing throughout life, especially the males (most markedly in the red kangaroo), whereas the smaller macropodids do not.

what are the four species of kangaroo?
what are the four species of kangaroo?

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