Red-necked Wallaby (Macropus rufogriseus)


Class: Mammalia
Order: Diprotodontia
Family:    Macropodidae
Size:    Height: Up to 3 feet (91 cm) 
Weight: Up to 65 pounds (29 kg)
Diet: Grass and plants
Distribution: Australia
Young:  1 joey every 1 to 2 years
Animal Predators:  Foxes and dingoes
IUCN Status: No special status
Terms: Young: Joey  Group: Mob
Lifespan: 12 to 15 years in the wild and up to 28 in captivity



·              Wallabies are marsupials, which literally means “pouched animals.”

·              They thump their tails on the ground to warn other wallabies of approaching danger.

·              The red-necked wallaby is also called Bennett’s wallaby, red wallaby and shrub wallaby.

·              The red-necked wallaby is one of the largest of the 17 species of wallabies.



Wallabies are members of the kangaroo family, and have brighter colours than their larger relatives, as well as shorter hind legs and a more delicate face. Their fur varies from grey with a reddish-brown neck and head, to all red. They have grey hands and feet and a tail that is grey above and white below, with a brown black tip. Red-necked wallaby males are larger than wallaby females. They use their powerful hind legs to hop forward, but will use their forelegs as well to move around while grazing. Like kangaroos, they use their thick, muscular tail to prop themselves up while sitting. Unlike kangaroos, wallabies also sit right on the ground with their tail tucked underneath. They have soft, thick fur, and in warm weather, they can be seen licking their hands and forearms to cool down. 



Red-necked wallabies inhabit the eucalyptus forests of southeastern coastal Australia, from the Queensland-New South Wales border through to South Australia, as well as on the island of Tasmania and the Bass Strait Islands.


Feeding Habits

Red-necked wallabies consume grass and plants. They graze from dusk to shortly after dawn and spend their days resting under the cover of thick brush. When food supplies get low, the mob of up to 30 individuals disperses in various directions to locate new food sources. 



Red-necked wallaby births on the mainland of Australia can occur in any month, but in Tasmania, they occur mostly during February and March. After a gestation period of 30 days, the incredibly tiny wallaby baby, also known as a joey, is born naked, blind and helpless, but must pull itself up into its mother’s pouch where it will stay for the next nine to 10 months, eventually growing to 2,000 times its birth size. There are four teats inside the pouch, and the joey may nurse until it is over a year old. At six to seven months, it begins to poke its head out of the pouch and eat whatever vegetation it can reach while the mother is grazing. When it has grown big enough to leave the pouch, the joey will still hop in and out of the pouch for the next few months to nurse. Female offspring often stay within the home range of their mothers, while males move away to find their own home range at about two years of age. 



Red-necked wallabies are solitary animals, but often congregate in large groups at food supplies, giving the impression that they are sociable. 



Of the 48 species of kangaroos and wallabies in Australia, only seven are commercially harvested. Red-necked wallabies are not among these species and are not a conservation concern



Red-necked Wallaby Wildlife Fact File, IM Pub, US