Red-necked Wallaby Macropus rufogriseus
Last Updated: Jan 27, 2017
Image credit: © San Diego Zoo Global. All rights reserved.
Order: Diprotodontia - koalas, wombats, possums, macropods (kangaroos, tree kangaroos, wallaroos, etc.)
Family: Macropodidae - kangaroos, wallabies
Species: Macropus rufogriseus (Desmarest, 1817) - red-necked wallaby
Subspecies: M. r. banksianus (Quoy and Gaimard, 1825) - red wallaby
Subspecies: M. r. fruticus (Ogilby, 1838)
Subspecies: M. r. rufogriseus (Desmarest, 1817) - Bennett's wallaby
Male: M. r. banksianus: 15-23.7 kg (33.1-55.3 lb); M. r. rufogriseus: 15-26.8 kg (33.1- 59.1 lb)
Female: M. r. banksianus: 12-15.5 kg (26.5-34.2 lb); M. r. rufogriseus: 11-15.5 kg (24.3-34.2 lb)
Male: M. r. banksianus: 770-888 mm (2.5-2.9 ft); M. r. rufogriseus: 712-923 mm (2.3-3 ft)
Female: M. r. banksianus: 708-837mm (2.3-2.8 ft); M. r. rufogriseus: 659-741 mm (2.2-2.4 ft)
Male: M. r. banksianus: 703-876 mm (2.3-2.9 ft); M. r. rufogriseus: 691-862 mm (2.3-2.8 ft)
Female: M. r. banksianus: 664-790 mm (2.2-2.6 ft); M. r. rufogriseus: 623-778 mm (2.0-2.6 ft)
Gray, red, and brown on body; white and gray on belly. Australian populations have short, coarse fur. Tasmanian populations have longer, shaggy fur.
|Distribution & Status||Behavior & Ecology|
Southeastern Australia and Tasmania
Eucalyptus forests with grasses and shrubs making up the understory
Population in Wild
Stable. Very common in Tasmania. Mixture of decreasing and increasing populations in mainland Australia.
Two- and four-legged hopping; sometimes use tail as a "fifth support limb." Good swimmers; doggie paddle.
Active at night, dawn, and dusk. Daytime hours spent resting.
Found singly or in small groups; often solitary.
Primarily, grasses, leaves, forbs. Some fruit, ferns, and fungi. Often feed in high elevation areas.
Dingos, raptors, and humans
|Reproduction & Development||Species Highlights|
Females: from 13 months
Males: from 19 months
About 30 days (range: 29-41)
Another birth occurs 16-29 days after the young permanently leaves the pouch.
Less than 1 g (0.04 oz)
Age at Weaning
In the wild: 10-15 years
In captivity: 6-15 years
- Many Bennett's wallabies bones found in Tasmanian caves; hunted by early humans
- Wild populations reintroduced to New Zealand
- Group dynamics very fluid
- Communicate using their ears, narrow set of vocalizations (growl, hiss, cough, cluck), and scent marking
- Reproduce efficiently; easily bred in captivity
- Young first emerge from pouch around 7 months
- Adult males can be up to twice as large as females
- Like other macropods, develop and lose four sets of molar teeth over a lifetime; teeth wear down from eating tough plants
- Ice Age (Pleistocene Era) predators of this species: Tasmanian wolves and Marsupial lions
- Populations stable; commercially harvested; ranchers and farmers sometimes perceive them to threaten crops and sheep food supplies in pastures
© 2011 San Diego Zoo Global.
How to cite: Red-necked Wallaby (Macropus rufogriseus) Fact Sheet, 2011. c2011. San Diego (CA): San Diego Zoo Global; [accessed YYYY Mmm dd]. http://ielc.libguides.com/sdzg/factsheets/red-necked wallaby
(note: replace YYYY Mmm dd with date accessed, e.g., 2015 Sep 10)
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